Crafting a Compelling Special Education Parent Concerns Letter for IEP Meetings

Crafting a Compelling Special Education Parent Concerns Letter for IEP Meetings

When it comes to navigating the maze of Special Education, the Individualized Education Program (IEP) meeting stands as a beacon of hope for parents seeking to advocate for their child's unique needs. Perhaps one of the most powerful tools in a parent's arsenal is the Parent Concerns Letter. This document is more than just a formality; it's the narrative that sets the stage for your child's educational journey, ensuring their voice isn't lost in the process.

Continue reading
Extended School Year and the IEP Student: A Guide for Parents

Extended School Year and the IEP Student: A Guide for Parents

In this post, we will explore the eligibility criteria, data collection to support the need for ESY, what to expect during ESY, and how parents can advocate for their child’s right to these essential services.

Continue reading
Shattering Stigma: Recognizing Dyslexia's Strengths and Triumphing Over Weaknesses

Shattering Stigma: Recognizing Dyslexia's Strengths and Triumphing Over Weaknesses

October is an important month for our dyslexic community as we come together to raise awareness about dyslexia. During this Dyslexia Awareness Month, we have an incredible opportunity to celebrate the unique strengths and abilities of individuals with dyslexia. It is equally important, however, to reflect on the significance of recognizing our strengths and weaknesses and embracing them. In this blog post, we will explore why it is vital for us and our children to acknowledge and appreciate our diverse abilities.

Continue reading
From Overwhelmed to Confident: How to Prepare for an IEP Meeting

From Overwhelmed to Confident: How to Prepare for an IEP Meeting

As parents of children with special needs, we know that preparing for an Individualized Education Program (IEP) meeting can feel overwhelming. It's a pivotal moment where we advocate for our child's education and ensure they receive the support they need. In this post, I'll guide you through the process of preparing for an IEP meeting, drawing from personal experience, professional expertise, and valuable insights. As a community, let's help each other and navigate this journey together.

Continue reading
Navigating the Maze: Demystifying IEPs and 504 Plans for Parents

Navigating the Maze: Demystifying IEPs and 504 Plans for Parents

As a parent of a child with special needs, it can often feel overwhelming and confusing to navigate the world of special education. Two commonly used terms that may cause further confusion are Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) and 504 Plans. In this blog, we'll focus on breaking down the differences between these two school-based programs, so you can better understand which option may be best for your child.

Continue reading

Understanding the Functional Behavioral Assessment: Why Comprehensive Data Collection is Critical

If you're a parent of a child with behavioral issues at school, you may have heard the term "functional behavioral assessment" (FBA) thrown around. But what exactly is an FBA, and why is it important? In this blog post, I'll share the red flags of an FBA that is not done correctly, how to spot if the school had not done due diligence while also discussing the importance of having a qualified person taking data, preferably a BCBA, it should include ABC data and data taken in different times of day, locations, with different people. An FBA is a process that is often used to help identify the underlying causes of a child's challenging behavior. B

Continue reading
Empowering Parents: Understanding the Procedural Safeguards in Special Education

Empowering Parents: Understanding the Procedural Safeguards in Special Education

Procedural safeguards are legal protections for parents and children with disabilities under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). These safeguards ensure that children with disabilities receive a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) in the Least Restrictive Environment (LRE) and that their rights are protected throughout the special education process.

Continue reading
All About FBAs

All About FBAs

What is an FBA? An FBA is a process that helps identify a specific function or the "why" of a behavior. The data gathered from an FBA can then be used to develop a behavior intervention plan that addresses the underlying cause of the behavior

Continue reading
What Impacts Reading Comprehension?

What Impacts Reading Comprehension?

Reading comprehension is understanding and making meaning from what you read. It's an essential skill for students to develop because it helps them better understand the subject matter they are studying.

Continue reading
What is Concidered Emotional Disturbance Under IDEA?

What is Concidered Emotional Disturbance Under IDEA?

One of the challenges with Emotional Disturbance is that it can be difficult to diagnose and treat. Many students with this condition have experienced trauma, which often exacerbates their emotional and behavioral issues. That coupled with an education system that is unwilling to address or support their needs and we have a recipe for mistrust and failure in our kids. Trust can be a significant issue for these students, and forming a relationship with them that is built on empathy, trust, and mutual respect can often be the solution to many problem behaviors and can have a lasting impact on their emotional development.

Continue reading
The IEP is Not Working for my Child

The IEP is Not Working for my Child

An IEP is an Individualized Education Plan, a legal document that details your child's educational present levels and current needs. Then it includes goals and objectives to support those needs. It covers all areas of education--including special education services--and consists of the regular education curriculum. The IEP also includes behavior intervention plans if necessary. The most important thing a parent should know about an IEP is that it is INDIVIDUALIZED for YOUR CHILD. Just because they do or do not support another child in a certain way does not mean they have to support your child the same way.

Continue reading
Planning for Life After High School

Planning for Life After High School

The process of providing special education includes transition planning. It is intended to assist high schoolers with impairments in preparing for life following graduation. As kids become 16 years old, schools must incorporate a transition plan in their individualized education programs, or IEPs. Some states demand that the changeover process starts earlier. It is crucial that the student participates in the transition process because transition planning is centered on what the student enjoys and where the student excels.

Continue reading
SMART Goals, What are They and How do I Ensure My Kid has Them?

SMART Goals, What are They and How do I Ensure My Kid has Them?

S- Specific M- measurable A- action words R- realistic and relevant T- time-limited

Continue reading
New Year, New Look at the IEP

New Year, New Look at the IEP

An Individualized Education Program (IEP) is a legal document that outlines the specific educational and related services that a student with a disability receives. It is individualized to meet the child's specific and unique needs so they can make meaningful progress in school. It should also be greeted with the future in mind; what will they do after high school? What will their living situation be? Will they be employable.? Will they be able to live independently?

Continue reading
But WAIT... there's more! Don't forget progress reports.

But WAIT... there's more! Don't forget progress reports.

Congratulations! You have an IEP for your child and are happy with the final product. The IEP team collaborated and worked hard to create an IEP that will work for your child. You pat yourself on the back and think, “I’m so grateful I don’t have to do this again for another year.”

Continue reading
But I have a Diagnosis!!!

But I have a Diagnosis!!!

“My child has been diagnosed, but the school said that doesn’t matter.” This statement is one of the most common frustrations I hear from parents

Continue reading
Quick Check: Your Child's IEP

Quick Check: Your Child's IEP

Let's be honest; there are a million things to consider when examining an IEP. It really can get overwhelming. Where do I start? Why do I need to worry about anything other than goals? Isn't this the school's job?

Continue reading

Consecutive is my Favorite IEP Word for Goals

know, it seems silly that I would have a favorite word for an IEP goal. I often tease the teams I work saying, "You know I would like you to add my favorite word here…" But why is consecutive my favorite word?

Continue reading