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English learners and special education

Produced by Massachusetts Law Reform Institute & Justice Center of Southeastern Massachusetts
Created February, 2022

If your child is an English Learner, and you think they may have a disability that is getting in the way of their progress in school, ask the school for a “bilingual” evaluation.  “Bilingual” means in English and the language that your child speaks at home.

If the school district decides your child is eligible for an IEP or a 504 Plan, they should still give your child English Learner Services and Instruction. Your child has a right to the services they need in both areas. 

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