Federal law recognizes the importance of parental involvement in making decisions about a child's education programs, especially special education programs for children with disabilities. What does one do when there is not a parent available for the student? In those cases school districts appoint a Surrogate Parent to represent the child with a disability who may need special education services.
What is a Surrogate Parent?
A person who represents a child in all matters relating to: (a) the identification, evaluation and educational placement of the child; and (b) the provision of free and appropriate public education to the child.
Who is eligible to act as a Surrogate Parent?
A person who:
- Is not an employee of the ODE, the school district, or any other agency that is involved in the education or care of the child;
- Has no personal or professional interest that conflict with the child's interests;
- Has knowledge and skills that ensure adequate representation of the child; and
- Has successfully completed training prescribed by ODE.