Richard recently presented at a conference in Orange County titled regarding 504’s and IDEA.

Here is a copy of his presentation Determining Eligibility for Sect 504 and IDEA



Richard recently presented at a conference in Orange County titled Developing and Implementing IEP’s.

Here is a copy of his presentation Developing and Implementing IEPs



At some point during your effort (sometimes fight) to receive special education services for your child, you may want to request an Independent Educational Evaluation, commonly referred to as an IEE. Parents and others often request an IEE if they disagree with the district’s evaluation.

To help make that request a little easier, please feel free to use this template to guide you. While there is no guarantee the district will agree to an IEE, knowing what a request should look like can be very helpful.



By Linaja Murray, CSNLG Attorney


When a student’s educational program is not appropriate, family members may privately fund after-school services to assist the student and seek reimbursement. Common examples of this include after-school tutoring or remediation in the area of reading, writing, and math. Families may also privately fund additional after-school services such as occupational therapy, speech and language therapy, vision therapy, behavioral therapy, and counseling.

In some cases, families may fund an entire educational program at a private school and seek reimbursement.

Getting Reimbursed

Whenever a family is privately funding an educational program or service, keeping clear payment records is absolutely essential to seeking reimbursement. Frequently, reimbursement for privately funded services is accomplished in a settlement agreement following the filing of a due process complaint, which may require the assistance of an attorney.


If you are privately funding an educational program or after-school therapies/services, you should adhere to the following guidelines:

  1. Request and keep all invoices from service providers Store these invoices in a separate folder on your computer that is easily accessible prior to and during mediation.
  2. Make all payments using a trackable method. The preferred method for privately funding services is payment by personal check. A secondary method that allows for reimbursement is debit and credit card transactions showing that a payment was made. Copies of canceled checks or bank statements will be required for proof of payment. Payment in cash complicates settlement negotiations and should be avoided whenever possible.
  3. Keep clear records. An excel sheet (like the one linked here) showing the invoice number, cost of service, and payment method will be very helpful in settlement negotiations.


Here is a spreadsheet to help you keep track of those expenses.


Dr. Marta M. Shinn, Ph.D., is the founder of Variations Psychology, a private practice mental health clinic in Orange County, California that offers independent diagnostic testing and counseling services to children, adolescents, college students and their families.

As we all know, having a child with special needs may require a lot of effort at home and a ton of effort working with schools to ensure your son or daughter is receiving the services they need.

Peter was hazed into the special education world in 2007, and has been working for others since 2010, and full time since 2014 when he was laid off from his systems maintenance programming job. He is still debugging, but special ed problems now instead of computer code.

Amy Munera is the current president of Autism Society San Diego, and has served on the board of directors for the past seven years. She is the mother of three autistic boys, ages 11,14, and 17, and is an active volunteer in the local autism community in San Diego County.

Dr. Gunn is a licensed psychologist and owner of Gunn Psychological Services, Inc. His experience has included work in a pediatric hospital, teaching or supervising at various Southern California Universities and providing therapy and assessment services to children and adults.

Sandra Dixon Shove is a former elementary educator, a non-attorney special education advocate in private practice, and a longtime Autism Society affiliate leader.