Yes. You can always obtain and independent educational evaluation (IEE) at your own expense and the school district must consider the results of an independent evaluation in any decision regarding the provision of a free appropriate public education (FAPE) to your child. The results may also be presented as evidence at a due process hearing. [34 C.F.R. Sec. 300.502(c); Cal. Ed. Code Sec. 56329(c).]
Once you have obtained the IEE and are satisfied with it, provide a copy to the school district well before the IEP meeting. And, inform the district in writing of the recommended services or placement in the IEE that you are requesting for your child. This will allow the district to provide you with “prior written notice” if the district refuses to provide the services or placement recommended in the IEE. See Chapter 4, Information on IEP Process.
Also, be sure to let the school district know that you want someone to attend the IEP meeting who is authorized to respond to the IEE on behalf of the school district. You are responsible for paying for an assessment that you have obtained on your own. However, if the district accepts the recommendations made in this assessment, you may be able to seek reimbursement from the school district.