• Related Services


    Related services are a broad array of services that assist a student with a disability to benefit from their program of specialized instruction. Related services include such things such as:

    • adaptive equipment and/or technology 
    • audiology
    • occupational therapy
    • orientation and mobility services 
    • physical therapy
    • psychological services
    • school social work services
    • special transportation
    • speech/language pathology

    While many of these services appear similar to or have the same title as medical and/or mental health services that might be provided in a clinic or hospital, there are significant differences between a related service provided by the schools and the services that might be provided by another agency.

    While the goal of a medical or mental health provider is to improve the health of the patient, the purpose of a related service is to facilitate the student's access to and allow them to benefit from their program of specialized instruction. Stated in reverse, if a student can access and benefit from the specialized instruction (i.e., meet their IEP goals) without a particular procedure or therapy, then it does not qualify as a related service. It is therefore possible that: A particular intervention or therapy may be medically necessary, but may not be needed within the schools in order for the student to access and benefit from their specialized instruction. In such instances, the medical community would be responsible for providing the needed intervention.

    A student may need a particular intervention to both address their medical needs and to access and benefit from their specialized instruction. The student would then receive that service both from the medical community and the schools. In such instances, it is important that the school and medical/mental health provider communicate with one another to insure their services are coordinated and supportive of one another.