7 Red Flags that your IEP is Garbage. {and what to do about it!}

7 Red Flags that your IEP is Garbage. {and what to do about it!}

How to tell when you have a crappy IEP. I’ve attended more IEP meetings than I can count. Or even care to count. I get it–parents only call in a Special Education Advocate when there’s trouble. If you were happy with things, you wouldn’t need help, right? But what that means is that as an…

How to Get Started with an IEP For Your Child.

How to Get Started with an IEP For Your Child.

Getting Started in the World of IEPs IEP stands for Individual Education Plan. It is just what it says. Children with disabilities are entitled to a “free and appropriate education” but what that looks like for each child is Individual. The concept of Special Education has only been around at the national level since 1975….

Advocate’s Tip: These Few Short Sentences on your Child’s IEP Could Prevent Suspensions.

Advocate’s Tip: These Few Short Sentences on your Child’s IEP Could Prevent Suspensions.

Important items that must be on your child’s IEP. “I got a call to pick up my daughter today because she put a child in a choke hold.” And of course this child with an IEP was on her way to a suspension. That’s what one of our group members posted recently. Sounds awful, right?…

Common Parent IEP Mistakes + How to Fix Them | IEP Tips for Parents

Common Parent IEP Mistakes + How to Fix Them | IEP Tips for Parents

IEP Tips for Parents Raise your hand if you just LOVE going to IEP meetings. (waits) No one? Raise your hand if you drink a bottle of wine the evening of an IEP meeting? A-ha! There, now I see some hands. I often say, “You don’t know what you don’t know” and the IEP meeting…

What are IEP Related Services in Special Education | Definition | Eligibility

What are IEP Related Services in Special Education | Definition | Eligibility

What are IEP Related Services? According to IDEA, these are the related services in Special Education. audiology counseling services early identification family training-counseling and home visits health services medical services nursing services nutrition services occupational therapy orientation and mobility services parent counseling and training physical therapy psychological services recreation and therapeutic recreation rehabilitative counseling services…

IDEA Procedural Safeguards | The IEP Parents’ Rights Document that most Parents never read.

IDEA Procedural Safeguards | The IEP Parents’ Rights Document that most Parents never read.

Special Education Procedural Safeguards Ok, finger-wagging time. Because I know that a very large percentage of parents are not reading your IEP Procedural Safeguards. I can tell by the questions you ask. Because many of the questions I am asked to answer (as an advocate) are very easily answered by looking at Procedural Safeguards. I’ve included…

How to Get an Effective Behavior Plan on your IEP | FBA

How to Get an Effective Behavior Plan on your IEP | FBA

Functional Behavior Assessments FBA In the IEP process, there is little that bothers me more than when I hear about one of our kids repeatedly being suspended, and the group will ask, “Does he have an FBA and behavior plan?” To which the parent responds “What’s an FBA?” Mind you, I’m not mad at the…

Special Factors in the IEP | Parent and Team Considerations

Special Factors in the IEP | Parent and Team Considerations

Special Factors in the IEP Most of the questions that we receive as educational advocates are about the implementation of the IEP. Let’s face it. It is not an easy document to understand at times because of it’s length and format. But there are the special factors on an IEP that you should be considering…

How to get an IEP for your Child, explained by a Special Education Advocate.

How to get an IEP for your Child, explained by a Special Education Advocate.

How to get an IEP. Gather your thoughts about your child and their struggles at school. Decide if meeting with the teacher is appropriate to discuss these concerns. Formalize those concerns into a letter to the school. Write a letter to your school (teacher and principal) asking that your child be evaluated for Special Education…

The Special Education Placement Decision Making Process, explained.

The Special Education Placement Decision Making Process, explained.

Special Education Placement Not only is IEP placement one of the most debated topics among parents, it’s also one of the most contentious issues you will have with your school district. So what are the placement options for learning disabled students? How do I get my child into a private placement? IEP placement is one…

How {and when!} to Request your Child’s School Records. {including IEP files}

How {and when!} to Request your Child’s School Records. {including IEP files}

School Educational Records We were seated around a huge U-shaped setup. I was directly across from the school district’s attorney, though we were a good 10 feet apart. We were in a settlement agreement meeting and were hoping to see some of the student’s IEP and school records. He looked right at me and said,…

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…

What to do when your desired (out-of-district) IEP placement rejects your child.

What to do when your desired (out-of-district) IEP placement rejects your child.

IEP Placement: Private and Out-of-District Ahhh…you’re finally there. After months (maybe years!) of IEP meetings, you and your school district have agreed that your child needs a private placement. Success! Finally, no more stagnating, no more regression. Your child will finally be in a more appropriate placement. And then, you get the sucker punch. It…

PWN in Special Education: The little known game-changer in the IEP process.

PWN in Special Education: The little known game-changer in the IEP process.

Prior Written Notice-PWN How many times have you heard phrases like these, at IEP meetings, when you’ve suggested something? I don’t think he/she needs that. Why don’t we ‘wait and see’ and talk about it in a few months? I have to discuss this with {someone with more authority} and then I’ll get back to…

They said my child is too old to be considered for “developmental delay.”

They said my child is too old to be considered for “developmental delay.”

Developmental Delay It’s weird, right? Your child has had an IEP for years, and his disability classification has always been Developmental Delays. Now, all of a sudden you feel blindsided because the school is telling you that they cannot check that box anymore. But your child is still disabled and has many delays. This can’t…