Prior Written Notice

Prior Written Notice – The Basics

Prior Written Notice is one of the rights that parents have under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Prior Written Notice, or PWN, helps parents understand what the school district is proposing or refusing to change in the student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP). In Connecticut, PWN is given to parents as a separate document from the IEP.

Q. What must the Prior Written Notice include?

A. It must include:

  • a description of the action proposed or refused by the school
  • an explanation of why the school proposes or refuses to take the action
  • a description of each evaluation procedure, assessment, record, or report the school used as a basis for their decision
  • a statement that the parents of a child with a disability have protection under the procedural safeguards and how the parents can get a copy of them
  • sources for parents to contact to get help in understanding these protections
  • a description of other options that the IEP Team considered and the reasons why those options were rejected
  • description of other factors that were considered by the school to influence their decision

Q. When will I get Prior Written Notice?

A. School districts must give parents written notice when they refuse or agree to make a change to the student’s: identification (eligibility), evaluation, educational placement; or provision of FAPE (a free, appropriate public education – changes to the IEP). It must be given to the parents ten days prior to the proposed change, but parents may choose to waive the right to the ten-day notice if they agree to making the changes start sooner.

» Prior Written Notice Basics PDF
» La notificación previa por escrito
» Prior Written Notice Document
» Prior Written Notice (PWN) Actions Proposed/Refused Reference Guide

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For more detailed information on Prior Written Notice, please click here.