Children Who Attend a Private or Religious School
Private and Religious Office (PRO)
Overview of the Private and Religious Office (PRO)
The Private and Religious Office (PRO) at District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) is responsible for locating, identifying, and evaluating all parentally-placed private school children ages 3-22 who have a disability or are suspected of having a disability. Parentally-placed children in a private school who have been found eligible for special education may qualify for special education services. Please see the Statement of Services document or the Frequently Asked Questions document to see what services may be available to your child.
The DCPS PRO serves children who:
- have been parentally-placed in a private elementary or secondary school,
- have been parentally-placed in a private religious elementary or secondary school, and
- are preschool and prekindergarten-aged and who have been parentally-placed in child development centers (child care centers).
To be eligible to be served by the PRO, the private school (which includes private, religious schools) or child development center that the child attends must be located within DC.
Starting the PRO Process
The first step (to determine if a child in a private or religious school is eligible for special education and may qualify for special education services) is to refer a child to the Private and Religious Office. This is done by submitting a completed Referral Form to DCPS.
The age of the child determines how someone (a parent or someone else) should refer a child:
Links to PRO Documents
Statement of Services: The Statement of Services document outlines the special education and related services (equitable services) DCPS will provide to parentally-placed private school children with disabilities as required by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEA) of 2004 (P.L. 108–446).
Frequently Asked Questions: This FAQ document contains the most commonly asked questions and helpful answers regarding special education and equitable services for parentally-placed private school students.
Contact Information for the DCPS Private and Religious Office
Phone: (202) 698‐8037
Fax: (202) 654-6079
Guidance from the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs: “Q and A: Questions and Answers On Serving Children With Disabilities Placed by Their Parents at Private Schools (April 2011)”