The Multidisciplinary Team
A multidisciplinary team is a group of individuals from multiple disciplines who meet to pursue a common goal, such as evaluating a student for placement in special education or creating an individualized education program (IEP) for a student. Multidisciplinary teams are sometimes referred to as child study teams or student support teams, among other terms. The professional collaboration of a multidisciplinary team, helps ensure that their work regarding students is comprehensive and as unbiased as possible.
Working toward common goals: Evaluation
Multidisciplinary teams who meet to evaluate students for placement in special education have several jobs. They collect several types of data to inform the team about students’ abilities, including:
- Medical history, educational performance, etc.
- Formal assessments, such as intelligence tests or tests of visual or aural acuity
- Informal assessments, such as samples of classroom work and observations of social behavior
- A baseline of performance to guide development of an IEP and determine the effectiveness of subsequent education
An IEP is a customized education plan put in place for students who have disabilities as defined by federal law in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA). Multidisciplinary teams who gather to create IEPs should:
- Set goals and objectives.
- Establish benchmarks.
- Design a plan outlining services and supports that will be provided to enable the child to meet his or her educational goals.