Friday, October 1, 2021

IEP : Health Domain

Completing an IEP Health Domain

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Hopefully Helpful School Nurse Tip: Being involved in the special education / special services process can seem overwhelming and confusing for many school nurses. Having a better understanding of the process and the role of the school nurse throughout the process will give you confidence to complete each of your areas.  Let's start with the health domain.

What is a Health Domain?

To understand what a health domain is, you must have an understanding of the special education Individualized Education Program (IEP) process.  First, an IEP is a formal document that describes a specific education plan with goals and intended outcomes for a specific student. Before the specific goals and outcomes are written or any assessment or evaluation can start, a review of the "domains" must take place. 

Special Education Domain Meeting

A  domain meeting is an official special education meeting where each member of the special education team reviews the findings specific to their domain. Depending on the findings, the school nurse or other member, may request "additional evaluations" needed. 

There are eight domain sections: 

  1. Academic Achievement
  2. Functional Performance
  3. Cognitive Function
  4. Communication Status
  5. Health
  6. Vision and Hearing
  7. Motor Ability
  8. Social/Emotional Conditions 

Typically, additional evaluations and assessments are needed to determine if an identified concern might negatively impact the student's educational learning process. Parents need to consent and team members need time to gather more information. The follow up information would then be presented at another meeting (Eligibility Determination Meeting) scheduled in the future. 


Who can Complete a Health Domain?

There are different guidelines depending on the state you live in. For example, in Illinois, a School Nurse holding a Professional Education License (PEL) should be the one to complete all Individualized Education Program (IEP) paperwork, including health domains. 

However, if school districts do not have a PEL School Nurse, they may hire a Registered Nurse who takes & successfully passes a six week RN with IEP designation course through the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) to complete the IEP paperwork. Do you know the requirements in your state?


How & Why is a Health Domain completed?

Most school nurses complete health domains by performing a school health chart review.  Think of this as your information gathering phase.  During this review, school nurses are looking for any current or previous health diagnoses, medication treatments, health concerns, school health action plans, Individual Healthcare Plans, etc. School Nurses are using this time to gather a health history in order to present at the upcoming Domain Meeting. They will also determine whether or not additional information is needed by gathering more specific and detailed information in the future.

How The School Nurse Completes Health Domains

  1. Print my calendar invitation to attend the meeting
  2. Pull the school health chart for the student listed on the calendar invitation. I keep the invitation upright so I can see the date of the meeting and know that is my deadline to complete the domain paperwork by
  3. Print this Health Domain Document- I'm old school & like to complete with paper and pen, but you could easily complete this electronically and just "make a copy" for each new meeting, ditch the lines & just type the information
  4. Fill in the information listed on the Health Domain Document by completing a school health chart review
  5. Enter my findings into my school district's web based special education system
  6. Print a copy of the electronic report and file that along with my paper Health Domain Document into the student's school health chart




Teachers Pay Teachers Resources

Original IHP form-
Updated IHP form-
FREE IEP Google Tracking Sheet -

free resources

Students with Disabilities Receiving Special Services-
IDHS IEP Overview-
Six Tips for Successful IEP Meetings-
School Nurse / Special Education & Reference Books-

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