If your child has an IEP, you know how important it is to keep up with your child’s progess. In New York City, teachers are so overwhelmed, that unfortunately, they sometimes forget. Don’t let them forget about your child using these steps.
Keeping the IEP up to date is important for several reasons. If you see that your child is improving, or has made a drastic improvement then you need to have that documented, and the goals that were set for your child during the IEP meeting will need to be readjusted to see a contuniance in your child’s improvement. Also, if your child is not showing any improvement, you will want to have the IEP updated to set new goals, and possibly have your child reevaluated for services.
1. Be Present
One of the best ways to keep up with your child’s IEP is to make friends with your child’s teacher(s). It’s important to keep up with whats happening in your child’s school. When you are present, the teachers and practitioners (psychologist, speech therapsit etc.) are more willing to help because you are personable and involved.
2. Call an IEP meeting yourself if something changes or you want an update
Many parents do not know their full rights when calling an IEP meeting, but you do have the right to call an IEP meeting whenever you want to. Obviously, you should have a valid reason for calling the meeting, and you should make sure you request the meeting verbally and in writing. If you feel uncomfortable with the IEP meetings as many parents do, you can bring in any person who you feel is on your side. You can bring in a psychologist, or special education advocate to argue your case.
3. Follow -Up
Many times the school will tell you that you have to wait 6-8 weeks for the updated report. That isn’t true, the report can be written within two weeks. Do not feel bad about following up. The longer you wait, the longer it will be before your child gets the assistance he/she needs. In cases where IEP’s are involved, persistence is key.
4. Track Results by Following Up with Teachers
Once your child starts receiving the new and improved services, you should ask for a bi-monthly or monthly progress report. The report does not have to include a list and outline of formal testing results, it can simply contain what the child is doing with the practitioner or teacher, and areas in need of improvement.
If you follow the steps above, you will always have the most up to date, personalized IEP report for your child.