The Secret that will have you Stop Stressing over IEP Meetings. Yes, really.

The Secret that will have you Stop Stressing over IEP Meetings. Yes, really.

How to Stop Stressing over IEP Meetings I was waiting in the lobby. Mom pulled into the parking lot, made her way towards me. “I’m so nervous!” she whispered. “Don’t be. We got this.” And we did. My mind drifted to other parents in our Facebook group who often express similar sentiments before a meeting….

35 Common IEP Meeting Questions {answered by a Special Ed Advocate!)

35 Common IEP Meeting Questions {answered by a Special Ed Advocate!)

IEP Meeting Questions Over the past decade, I have attended hundreds of IEP meetings and met with hundreds of families. And, with the large Facebook group, the other admins and I have answered literally thousands of questions about IEP meetings. Sure, the I is for Individual. Still, I see a lot of commonalities. Common IEP…

How to Prepare for an IEP Meeting | Checklist | Be a Better Advocate

How to Prepare for an IEP Meeting | Checklist | Be a Better Advocate

IEP Meetings This is a really old post that I have been meaning to update for ages. I see the image show up on Pinterest and I just cringe because I know that the information that is on this site now is just so much better than it was in 2013. The old post didn’t…

How Long Does the School Have to Respond to an IEP Meeting Request? What about an Emergency?

How Long Does the School Have to Respond to an IEP Meeting Request? What about an Emergency?

Parent Request for IEP Meeting Timeline IDEA does not define this. Some state special education regulations have set a time limit on how long the school has to respond to your request. You can read more on how to request an IEP meeting and what to do if it’s an emergency below. How often can…

Requesting an IEP Meeting |  Who | How | Letter Templates

Requesting an IEP Meeting | Who | How | Letter Templates

How to Request an IEP Meeting This one should be filed under “blog posts I never thought I’d have to do.” I never realized how much misinformation there is surrounding asking for an IEP meeting. Who can request an IEP meeting? How do you request an IEP meeting? Can a parent request an IEP meeting…

Are You Being Gaslighted at School or IEP Meetings? {Spoiler Alert: Probably!}

Are You Being Gaslighted at School or IEP Meetings? {Spoiler Alert: Probably!}

Gaslighting at School I remember the first time I was gaslighted at an IEP meeting. It probably wasn’t the first time, but it was the first time that I remember. I was working in a local district, and I had been there a lot. This particular district had a horrible reputation as far as discipline…

Can a Parent Record an IEP Meeting? | Recording Laws for 50 States

Can a Parent Record an IEP Meeting? | Recording Laws for 50 States

Recording School IEP Meetings Can you (audio) record your IEP meeting? It’s a question that I’ve seen parents and advocates discuss quite a bit. And like all the other parts of the IEP, there are no easy answers to the question. In deciding whether or not to record your child’s IEP meeting, there are many…

Who is Required to attend an IEP meeting? Can I exclude people?

Who is Required to attend an IEP meeting? Can I exclude people?

Who Attends IEP Meetings I have a friend and there are 18 school staff people, and her, at her IEP meetings. I’ve mentioned many times before how large Kevin’s IEP team is, and even I don’t have meetings that large. One time with a client, I was attending a parent-requested IEP meeting. This particular school…

What happens after an IEP Meeting? And what to do next.

What happens after an IEP Meeting? And what to do next.

AFTER the IEP Meeting It seems that many parents anticipate and prepare for an IEP meeting and then that’s it. Often, it’s very anti-climatic, all that preparing and worrying. And then what? Are you left with this feeling of not being resolved, or not knowing what to expect? Sound familiar? Let’s go over what happens…

Why More Parents Should Consider Facilitated IEP Meetings.

Why More Parents Should Consider Facilitated IEP Meetings.

Facilitated IEP Meetings My very first experience with a facilitated IEP meeting was not a good one. Things were very tense between the parents and the school. The parent hired me, the situation began to escalate. So I suggested a facilitated IEP meeting. We scheduled the meeting and the facilitator (more on how to do…

Why IEP Parents Should Never Agree to the “Let’s just Wait and See.”

Why IEP Parents Should Never Agree to the “Let’s just Wait and See.”

Let’s Just Wait and See. I’d be willing to be my house and my car that 99% of all IEP parents have experienced the “Let’s just wait and see.” It’s one of the most common and most effective stall or delaying tactics when a parent asks for something on the IEP. It goes like this….

IEP Meeting Checklist for Parents | Be Prepared and Confident!

IEP Meeting Checklist for Parents | Be Prepared and Confident!

IEP Preparation Checklist As an advocate, I have attended literally hundreds of IEP meetings. I know you, Moms. You’re stressed and anxious. But attending all those IEP meetings has also given me a tremendous view of all kinds of people and meetings and ways to prepare. If you hire a Special Education Advocate, you might…

Yes, the IEP Meeting MUST be held at a time convenient for parents.

Yes, the IEP Meeting MUST be held at a time convenient for parents.

What does IDEA say about parents attending IEP meetings? Whew, can we please put this issue to bed, once and for all? Because I have had it up to here (I’m pointing to my forehead, lol) with schools telling parents that “we only have IEP meetings at 7 or 2.” Or something like that. No,…

When should I receive a Draft Copy of the IEP or Evaluations?

When should I receive a Draft Copy of the IEP or Evaluations?

Draft IEP Timelines “Well, Mrs. Lightner, we are not going to be making any changes to this IEP today.” Oh lordy. Do I remember that day! Kevin was still a toddler and it was one of my first IEP meetings. That woman really tapped a sleeping bear. I had read about IEPs, as much as…

7 Real-Life Examples of Misogyny at IEP Meetings.

7 Real-Life Examples of Misogyny at IEP Meetings.

The misogyny of IEP meetings. I receive a surprising amount of criticism for catering to women on this blog. Or, writing about them and to them. Sure, much of it is constructive criticism such as “Remember, dads do this stuff too!” It’s usually in response to a post that I’ve done that has “moms” in…

7 Things you Never Want to Hear at an IEP Meeting.

7 Things you Never Want to Hear at an IEP Meeting.

Be on Alert for these phrases at your IEP Meeting. You’re sitting in your IEP meeting. Things seem to be going well. Everyone is pleasant and there’s a constructive conversation. But your gut is telling you that something just isn’t quite right. But, how do you know? Well, after having attended hundreds of IEP meetings,…

These 6 Principles of IDEA must be applied at every IEP meeting.

These 6 Principles of IDEA must be applied at every IEP meeting.

6 Principles of Special Education I have to open this post with a shout out to blog reader Mike T. He emailed me, as a link to this post and the printable was gone. I searched and searched and sure enough, he was right. So, starting over. Because the 6 Principles of IDEA and Special…