How To Make The Most Of Your Child's IEP Meetings

How To Make The Most Of Your Child's IEP Meetings

Individualized Education Program (IEP) for special needs children are conducive for their educational success. Being parents of special needs children, you play a vital role in developing and implementing teaching methods and strategies for your child. Not only it is crucial to attend these meetings, but parents also need to be prepared to make the most out of IEP meetings to ensure the child receives support in the best possible ways.

These meetings are conducted to determine the child's educational program for the upcoming year. As parents, you are in a unique position to work along with the school on framing educational goals; successful IEP meetings can only be possible when all the support system of the child works at their best.

If you are struggling with IEP meetings, here are some tips for getting the most out of it –

Keep Things In Order

Research about programs that might help your child; gather as much information as possible. It is always a good idea to attend IEP meetings with a prepared mind. Try getting a copy of the school file (any testing data, or teacher feedback record) to help you understand where your child is at academically. You can also make a list of topics/issues you want to discuss with teachers. If there are any questions you want to discuss or about any modifications you want for your child’s education, such important things are can be best handled when you keep a tab on it. This ensures all the essential matters are being discussed during the meeting.

Work As A Team

As parents it is integral to view these meetings in form of collaboration, successful IEP meetings are surely doable when parents, teachers, and the support staff work together as teams. Apart from school members, parents are also allowed to bring their private therapist or psychologist to the meeting. Find out what concerns the schools have, share important information, and exchange ideas in designing educational plans for your child's academic success. As each and everyone is responsible to work together to meet the educational needs of your child.

Keep A Journal Record

Whether it's Online IEP meeting or a physical one, taking notes to jot down all kinds of information and suggestion can come in handy. As these meetings can be lengthy, often last up to 3 to 4 hours and discussion can happen on individual goals and objectives, it is not practical to think you are going to remember every information that is delivered in IEP meetings. Some school does allow parents to audio record the sessions upon request. If you are planning to on it, you need to check with their policy before, to confirm whether or not you are allowed to record. All in all, journaling is a must for all parents in IEP meetings.

Ask For Support

Whether you are attending IEP meetings for the first time or have already done it many times, having supportive guidance available at your hands is never too much. For starters, you can bring someone else apart from your spouse who can add value to the meeting. Such as friends or other family members as IEP meetings can be intimidating at times and can bring out a lot of stressful emotions. furthermore, you can ask for help from the teacher as they might be able to recommend teaching methods or special programs that your child may benefit from. Advice is always good when it comes from a reliable source, it can give you practical ideas to help make the learning process fit for individual needs.

IEP meetings are the best source for discussing and coming up with solutions whenever your child struggles in any areas - academic, cognitive, social, and linguistic and it is also a good time to discuss what successes he/she has had. It allows ideas to form strategies that can be accommodated and resources that your child may need to help them achieve learning objectives.

Parents undoubtedly have a crucial part to play in it. not just to support the child for academic success but to help them create a life that feels nourishing and progressive. And to achieve this parent can pursue special educational needs courses to provide holistic support to their children.

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