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As already mentioned, I think it depends on what you want. A medical diagnosis is required if you want your insurance to pay for certain therapies, and it is required to apply for SSI. It is not necessarily required for the schools. Our son received an educational evaluation through our school district and got all of the services he needs from that. If we had disagreed with the district, we would have gone for a medical diagnosis because that overrides an educational evaluation. We also did not get a medical diagnosis because it would not have opened up any options that we were willing to pursue (for example, I don't want to take him to a DAN! doctor and we choose to have him in swimming lessons instead of extra OT sessions outside of school hours). Now that our son is getting ready for a reevaluation, we are pursuing a couple of avenues that may help him keep certain services. Our school district's autism team is going to evaluate him, too, and I am comfortable with them. If you are going to be using the public schools, find out all you can about your district now. My district has an integrated autism preschool that my son blossomed in -- and his home elementary school has helped him continue to progress.

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