Preparing for the IEP: Helpful Hints for a Successful Meeting
Before the Meeting
1. Review your child’s current IEP.
• What goals did your child reach? Which ones haven’t been met? Are new goals needed?
• Ask to review all of your child’s school records.
2. Talk to your child about school.
• What subjects and activities do they like or not like?
• Pay attention to what seems to motivate and interest your child.
• Ask your child about their strengths/needs and goals for the future.
3. Visit your child’s classroom(s) and other possible program options.
• Contact the teacher(s) after your visit to ask them questions.
• Before your child transitions to a new school it may be helpful to visit the new facility and meet the staff.
4. Make a list of your child’s strengths and needs.
• Consider academic, social, behavioral and self-help skills for the next year and upcoming transitions.
• Have family members and friends contribute to your list.
5. Make a list of goals you would like your child to achieve.
• What concerns and hopes do you have for your child now and in the future?
• Share your expectations and dreams for your child.
6. Make a list of questions you have for the team.
• Review samples of your child's work and progress reports to see if appropriate progress has been made.
• Call your child’s private therapist or doctor if you have any concerns.Take recent reports from them to the meeting.
7. Know what rights and responsibilities you and your child have for special education services.
• Review the procedural safeguards that the school is required to give you. Ask for information about IEP procedures.
• Attend parent training or contact a parent group for more information.
8. Be prepared to advocate for your child.
• Know who will be attending the meeti
• Have someone with you for support.
• Organize your thoughts and materials.
• Maintain a positive attitude.
• Assume that each member has your child’s best interest in mind and that everyone wants to work together.
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