NCLB and IDEA: What Parents of Students with Disabilities Need to Know & Do
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Tips for IEPCs
Every Special Education Student has an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) which is revised at least annually. The IEP is a very important document. It describes the special services the school district will provide the student. It is extremely important that parents are full participants in developing the IEP. The following tips may be helpful for parents to prepare for this important meeting.
1. Call Ahead
It is helpful for parents to have information before the meeting. Being aware of your child’s progress, the teacher’s recommendations, and other educational options ahead of time may assist your decisions at the meeting. It is also helpful for the teacher to know in advance if you have special requests. Teachers will be happy to discuss issues important to you prior to the meeting. Simply leave a message at the school office and they will call you back to share information and discuss your concerns.
2. Request Records
If your child has recently had a comprehensive psycho-educational evaluation, it may be helpful to obtain and review these records ahead of time. This will assist in your ability to ask questions and to have your concerns fully addressed.
3. Visit Program Options
It is often helpful for you to personally visit the various education possibilities available to your child. Your child’s Special Education Teacher will assist you in making the necessary arrangements.
4. List Questions
It is easy to become overwhelmed or distracted at IEP meetings. Listing your questions and concerns ahead of time will help insure that they are addressed at the meeting.
5 Bring a friend
IEPs can be overwhelming. The district is required to arrange for numerous school personnel to be present. You are welcome to bring anyone you wish to an IEPC. Your district’s P.A.C. representative is often a helpful person because they have had much experience at IEPs.
The purpose of an IEP is to develop appropriate education plans which address the special needs of students. It is hopeful that these tips will promote improved communion and understanding between home and school so that the best plans can be developed and implemented.
Parents Can Make the Difference
Reading to your child is only one way to help him or her become a good reader someday. Here are some other ways you can help:
- Talk to your child all the time, no matter how young he or she is.
- Tell your child stories. Make them up if you need to.
- Play counting games with your child.
- Don’t just watch a TV program. Talk about it.
- Show your child written words for the things he or she says.
- Take your child on trips to the zoo, the park, the book store, and other places. Talk about the new things you see on your trip.
- Go to the library. Find out what programs they have for children. Get a card for yourself and your child.
- Make sure your child has books around at all times.
- Make sure you have books too, and your child sees you reading.
- Sign your child up for learning programs.
- Make sure your child doesn’t miss too much school.
- Help your child with his or her homework if you can.
- Make sure you get to know the teachers.
- Whenever there is a meeting at school for parents, GO.
- Know your rights as a parent. You have the right:
- to know how your child is doing in school;
- to see your child’s school records;
- to know about test scores and have them explained to you;
- to get special education help for your child; and
- to help plan the special education program for your child.