The purposes of an Identification, Placement, and Review Committee (IPRC) is to determine whether and in what way a student is considered exceptional, and if so, to determine an appropriate educational placement for them, based on their learning needs and parental preferences.

A meeting may be initiated by a parent/guardian, or the school principal.  Within 15 school days of requesting a meeting, the involved parties will be advised of a proposed date and time for the meeting.  Parents will be provided with a written invitation to attend, as well as a copy of any assessments or reports that will be included in discussion at the meeting.  

Who participates in an Identification, Placement, and Review Committee? 
The IPRC generally consists of the following participants:

  • Parents/guardians of the student (unless they decline to attend, in which case the IPRC can continue without them, and they will be notified in writing of the results of the meeting)
  • The student, if they are 16 year or older, and parents feel they would be able to contribute to the meeting
  • School officials (may include board office special education staff, or itinerant teachers/professionals who can speak to abilities or test results)
  • School principal
  • School staff, such as the classroom teacher and/or teaching assistants that support the student
  • Parents/student support person (e.g. an advocate or representative from a local disability-specific organization).  This person would attend on request of the parents.

What are the categories of exceptionalities that a student can be identified as having? 
The 2017 Special Education in Ontario Policy and Resource Guide lists the following categories of exceptionalities and definitions:

• Behavioural Exceptionality: A learning disorder characterized by specific behaviour problems over such a period of time, and to such a marked degree, and of such a nature, as to adversely affect educational performance and that may be accompanied by one or more of the following:
a. an inability to build or to maintain interpersonal relationships;
b. excessive fears or anxieties;
c. a tendency to compulsive reaction;
d. an inability to learn that cannot be traced to intellectual, sensory, or other health factors, or any combination thereof.

Autism: A severe learning disorder that is characterized by:
a. disturbances in: rate of educational development is not the result of a lack of acuity in hearing and/or vision that has not been corrected;
intellectual disabilities; socio-economic factors; cultural differences; lack of proficiency in the language of instruction; lack of motivation or effort; gaps in school attendance or inadequate opportunity to benefit from instruction.

Giftedness: An unusually advanced degree of general intellectual ability that requires differentiated learning experiences of a depth and breadth beyond those normally provided in the regular school program to satisfy the level of educational potential indicated.
Mild Intellectual Disability: A learning disorder characterized by:
a. an ability to profit educationally within a regular class with the aid of considerable curriculum modification and support services;
b. an inability to profit educationally within a regular class because of slow intellectual development;
c. a potential for academic learning, independent social adjustment, and economic self-support.
• Developmental Disability: A severe learning disorder characterized by:
a. an inability to profit from a special education program for students with mild intellectual disabilities because of slow intellectual development;
b. an ability to profit from a special education program that is designed to accommodate slow intellectual development;
c. a limited potential for academic learning, independent social adjustment, and economic self-support.

• Physical Disability: A condition of such severe physical limitation or deficiency as to require special assistance in learning situations to provide the opportunity for educational achievement equivalent to that of students without exceptionalities who are of the same age
or development level.
• Blind and Low Vision: A condition of partial or total impairment of sight or vision that even with correction affects educational performance adversely.

• Multiple Exceptionalities: A combination of learning or other disorders, impairments, or physical disabilities that is of such a nature as to require, for educational achievement, the services of one or more teachers holding qualifications in special education and the provision of support services appropriate for such disorders, impairments, or disabilities.

Ontario Ministry of Education

What are the types of placement options available to a student who is deemed exceptional? 
There are six placement options for students who are deemed exceptional.  For a detailed description of each, please see the Placement Options page.  The options are:
– A regular class with indirect support 
A regular class with resource assistance
A regular class with withdrawal assistance
A special education class with partial integration
A full-time special education class
A Provincial or Demonstration school (e.g. school for the Deaf)

The IPRC should look at how a student can be accommodated in a regular class, if possible, before considering special education class options.

What if I don’t agree with the decision made by the IPRC? 
The following process is outlined by the Ministry of Education:

A parent who is unhappy with the decision of an IPRC can ask to meet again with the IPRC to consider the matter further. If the parent feels that the second meeting was unsuccessful, or if the parent does not believe
a second meeting with the IPRC would be helpful, the parent can ask that the decision of the IPRC be reviewed, by writing to the director of education of the school board requesting a meeting with a Special
Education Appeal Board (SEAB). If parents are not satisfied with the decision of the appeal at the school board level, they may apply and have their case heard by a provincial Special Education Tribunal. The appeal process has specific rules and time limits. These are described in the document titled Highlights of Regulation 181/98.

Ontario Ministry of Education