1. Does a child have to have a certain disability to receive an assistive technology tool or device?
In 2004, Individuals with Disability Education Act (IDEA) required that assistive technology be considered at every child’s Individualized Education Program (IEP) meeting. A student’s educational needs, not his/her disability, determines whether or not assistive technologies are appropriate for him/her.
2. As a parent, how do I find out the results of the AsTech evaluation?
Copies of the report are sent to the IEP team and the IEP team reconvenes to discuss the recommendations and consider any modifications that need to be made to the IEP (e.g. a change in goals, addition of modification, etc.). A copy of the report is also sent home to the parents via the student’s case carrier.
3. If a referral is made to the AsTech Team, how long will it take for the evaluation to be completed?
The AsTech Team has a timeline of 65 business days to complete an evaluation.
4. If a device is recommended for a child, will someone be available to teach the student, teachers, and family how to use it?
Trainings are offered by the AsTech Team members and/as needed by vendors from whom products are purchased. All members of the IEP team are invited to participate in these trainings, which are usually held at the schools attended by the students who use the technology. AsTech members inform IEP team members of trainings in the area, Parent Resource Center (PRC) events and online professional development opportunities.
5. Who can I contact if I have questions or concerns about the device my child is using?
Training is extended to families with students with devices, as well. If you have any questions about the device your child is using, please contact your IEP case carrier first. If necessary, the AsTech case specialist will be contacted to help address the concerns or contact the manufacturer.
6. Can the student take the device home?
A device can be taken home if the student requires the device at home to support his/her IEP goals and/or accommodations. If the device is damaged at school, the school pays for the repairs or replacement of the device. If the device is damaged at home, the student’s family is responsible for paying for the particular device. Parents and caregivers are given a home loan form for all devices that are taken home.