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Procedural Directive for Special Education December 2021

Notice: This policy was reviewed, revised, and/or renamed. We provide this revision for historic purposes only. Please see our current policies and procedural directives.

This procedural directive was updated February 2023.

Procedural Safeguards

In accordance with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), the district shall ensure procedural safeguards are in place for children with disabilities and children who are suspected of having disabilities as well as their respective parent(s)/guardian(s). With respect to the provision of a free appropriate public education, the procedural safeguards requirement is designed to, among other things, provide parents/guardians of children with disabilities, or those children suspected of having disabilities, meaningful involvement in the educational process of their children and provide information about the right to participate in their children’s educational programming decisions.

Scope of Procedural Safeguards

Procedural safeguards pertain to the following circumstances:

  • Independent educational evaluations
  • Prior written notice
  • Parental consent
  • Access to educational records
  • Opportunity to present and resolve complaints through the due process  complaint and state complaint procedures, including:
    • Time period to file complaint
    • Opportunity for the Albuquerque Public Schools to resolve the complaint
    • Differences between the due process complaint and the state complaint procedures, including the jurisdiction of each procedure, what issues may be raised, filing and decisional timelines, and relevant procedures
  • Availability of mediation
  • Child’s placement during the due process complaint
  • Procedures for students placed – or who may be placed – in an interim alternative educational setting
  • Requirements for unilateral placement by parents of children in private schools at public expense
  • Hearings on due process complaints, including requirements for disclosure of evaluation results and recommendations
  • State-level appeals
  • Civil actions, including the time period in which to file those actions, and
  • Attorney’s fees

Procedural Safeguards Notice

Parent(s)/guardian(s) of a student who needs, or is believed to need, special education and related services have the right to receive notice of their procedural safeguards concerning identification, evaluation and placement under the IDEA. At least one time each year, parents/guardians must receive a copy of the procedural safeguards. A student’s parent/guardian or representative of a student who is requesting an initial evaluation for special education, either verbally or in writing, must also receive a copy of the procedural safeguards.

Schools shall also provide a copy of the procedural safeguards:

  • Upon initial referral or parent request for evaluation
  • Upon receipt of the first state complaint and upon receipt of the first due process complaint in a school year
  • In accordance with the discipline procedures under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, and
  • Upon request by a parent

Notice in Understandable Language

The procedural safeguards notice shall be written in language understandable to the public and provided in the parent’s native language or other mode of communication the parent uses., unless it is not feasible to do so.

Administrative Position:                

  • Associate Superintendent for Special Education      

Department Director:                    

  • Executive Director of Compliance


Legal Cross Ref.:                        

  • Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 20 U.S.C. § 1415(d); 34 C.F.R. § 300.121; 34 C.F.R. § 300.500-536           

Board Policy Cross Ref.:                   

  • IL- Special Education                       

Procedural Directive Cross Ref.:     

  • Confidentiality of Information
  • Conflict Resolution at the Lowest Possible Level
  • Consent
  • Discipline of Student with Disabilities/Behavior
  • Due Process Hearings
  • Independent Educational Evaluations
  • Parent, Including Foster and Surrogate Parent
  • Prior Written Notice
  • State Level Complaint Procedures
  • Unilateral Placement of Children in Private Schools at Public Expense 


  • APS Procedural Safeguards
  • Procedural Safeguards (New Mexico Public Education Department)           

NSBA/NEPN Classification:       IHBA            

Introduced: April 10, 2019
Adopted: April 18, 2019
Reviewed: December 1, 2021
Revised: December 10, 2021