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Surrogate Parent Information

A surrogate or foster parent may be needed to represent a student with a disability during the special education process as outlined by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEA).  

In cases where the child has no parent(s), none can be located, or the child is a ward of the state, a surrogate parent must be appointed to make educational decisions on behalf of the child and to protect the child’s rights in matters relating to identification, evaluation, and placement in special education. 

To serve as a surrogate or foster parent of a student receiving special education services, an individual must meet several criteria, one of which is to complete a training that has been identified to meet the minimum standards established by the Texas Education Agency. 

All Surrogate/Foster Parent Materials can be found on the SPEDTex Surrogate Parent Webpage, in both English and Spanish. 

How to register
  • Surrogate and Foster Parent Online Modules (English) PDF
  • Surrogate and Foster Parent Online Modules (Spanish) PDF

Online resources


For information on students in foster care, please visit our

ESC-20 Foster Care page.