Select Language: English | Spanish
Menu Close

(1.81) If my child is not receiving a regular diploma, but will receive a certificate of achievement or completion, is she still eligible for special education?

(1.81) If my child is not receiving a regular diploma, but will receive a certificate of achievement or completion, is she still eligible for special education?

Your child is eligible for special education services until she reaches the age of 22, unless she meets graduation requirements before that time. [34 C.F.R. Sec. 300.102(a)(3)(ii); Cal. Ed. Code Secs. 56026(c)(4) & 56026.1.] Your non-graduating child may, however, receive a “certificate of achievement” (“certificate of completion”) at the end of the typical senior year or at any time before she exits the school district at age 22. The certificate may provide some recognition to students who meet their IEP goals or complete a prescribed alternative course of study, but who will not receive a regular diploma. The certificate was also created to overcome objections by district officials who believe special education students should not participate in graduation ceremonies with their same-age peers when they are not being awarded a diploma. Because a certificate does not end eligibility, a student who receives a certificate could continue working toward a regular diploma. [Cal. Ed. Code Secs. 56390 & 56392.]  See Q & A #1 in Chapter 3 for more detailed information.