Students enrolled at WSD receive comprehensive assessment services from a multidisciplinary team of highly trained professionals. Assessments and educational support services address all domains of the life, including academic, social, behavioral, emotional, physical, cognitive, language, communication and transition. Our team of highly qualified professionals conducts evaluations following the principals below:

  • Assessments are administered in the student’s primary language or mode of communication.
  • Assessments are carefully selected and interpreted so as not to be discriminatory on a racial or cultural basis.
  • Evaluators use technically sound instruments which are reliable and valid for the purpose for which the assessment tool was designed.
  • When properly validated tools are unavailable; our team of professionals are very adept at adapting assessment tools and with careful interpretation making professionals judgements that will yield qualitative information to help guide decisions and services.
  • Assessments are provided and interpreted with a “bilingual-lens,” meaning our professionals are very capable of determining which strengths and weaknesses are within typical range of development for a bilingual learner versus a student who may have a substantial delay or disorder.

Initial Evaluations

Before a child can receive special education and related services for the first time, a full and individual initial evaluation of the child must be conducted to see if the child has a disability and is eligible for special education services. Informed parent consent must be obtained before this evaluation may be conducted. For children PreK-12th grade, the student’s Initial Evaluation for initial eligibility and placement into special education is conducted by the students’ public school. Read more about the admissions process.


Every three years, in accordance with state and federal law, or sooner if referred by a student’s teacher, parent, or member of the IEP team; students receiving special education services must have their eligibility and services re-evaluated. Re-evaluations, whether through a review of existing data or through re-instrumentation of testing provides:

  1. A comprehensive review of a student’s progress and needs.
  2. Data to determine continued eligibility and needed special education services.
  3. Information about a student’s needs to help guide development of IEP services.
  4. An opportunity to celebrate the great growth students have at WSD!

Functional Behavioral Assessments

Some students may exhibit behaviors which adversely impact their learning or the learning of others and are in need of a Functional Behavioral Assessment (FBA). An FBA is a process to identify the function (or reasons) behind a student’s behavior. Through the FBA process the IEP team identifies aspects of the setting, specific triggers that may set the stage for the behavior and consequences which may be inadvertently reinforcing or maintaining the behavior. The FBA process leads the IEP team through a system of steps toward development of a Positive Behavioral Intervention Plan (PBIP) which becomes a plan for staff and the student to help decrease a maladaptive behavior and increase socially acceptable behaviors creating a positive and safe learning environment for all.

Admissions 45 Day Diagnostic Review

WSD’s evaluators participate on the Admissions Team to review student files, determine assessment needs and conduct observations to assist the Admissions team for a final placement decision. Students receive academic and language screening to support initial placement and programming. Read more about the admissions process.