by Pamela Wright, Wrightslaw.com
There are five rules for successful IEP meetings. Keep these rules in mind as you prepare for IEP meetings, especially meetings held during the COVID -19 pandemic.
Rule #1: Know what you want.
“I told the team that I was worried about Joachin’s loss of skills since his school closed in March. The chairman said, ‘What do you want us to do?’ Why did they ask me that question? I’m not a teacher. I’m just a parent. Don’t they know what to do? I think they wanted to make me feel stupid.” – Marie at a parent training session.
Did the team intend to make Marie feel stupid? We don’t know. Was the school’s request unreasonable? No.
When you attend an IEP meeting, you need to share your observations, difficulties, and requests in clear, simple language. If the meeting’s purpose is to consider compensatory or recovery services, use facts, not feelings. Be prepared to answer these questions:
- What do you want?
- What action do you want the school to take?
- What facts support your request?