Parent Information

As with many specialized fields, there are terms used in special education that are unique. This guide is not a legal document and was developed to give parents and educators in Pennsylvania an understanding of the language of special education so they can more easily participate in educational decision-making.

Parents know their child better than anyone else and have valuable information to contribute about the kinds of programs and services that are needed for their child’s success in school.

To ensure the rights of children with a disability, additional laws have been made. In this guide we also use the terms "rules" and "regulations." Sometimes these rules can be confusing to parents; they may be written in language that is difficult to understand. This booklet has been written to explain these rules so parents will feel comfortable and can better participate in the educational decision-making process for their child.

A glossary for parents and educators from the Pennsylvania Department of Education, Bureau of Special Education, Pennsylvania Training and Technical Assistance Network.