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Determining Special Education Needs for K to 12 Students

Who should I contact if I think my child needs special education services? 

If your child is enrolled at or attending a DCPS school:

  • Contact your child’s teacher. 
  • Contact information for DCPS schools can be found at

If your child is enrolled at or attending a DC charter school

  • Contact your child’s school. 
  • Contact information for charter schools can be found at

If your child is attending a private or religious school located in DC, attending a private or religious school located outside of DC (please note: the child must be a DC resident), or they are registered as a home school student with the DC Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE): 

  • Contact the DCPS Centralized IEP Support Unit at (202) 442-5475 or [email protected] or visit
    • The Centralized IEP Support Unit will need the following information for the child: 
      1. Referral Form 
      2. Proof of enrollment at a private or religious school in DC (usually a letter from the school) or OSSE Homeschool authorization letter 
      3. DC residency verification (DC residents only, to be completed after other documents are received) 
    • Additional suggested documents: 
      1. Attendance records 
      2. Report cards 
      3. Standardized test scores 
      4. Work samples 
      5. Prior evaluations (if applicable) 

If your child is suspected of having a disability, and your child’s IEP team determines that an evaluation is required, the team goes through the eligibility process. DCPS is required to complete the eligibility process within 60 days of receiving your consent to evaluate your child. This section describes important parts of the process, the information you can use to be an informed member of the team and support in place for your child. 

For more information on special education programs and services in DCPS, please refer to the DCPS Special Education Family Guide.