Special Education regulations always seem to be changing. It can be difficult to keep up. As an Education Specialist at Child and Family Development, I am often asked to “demystify” the Special Education process.
Here are some of the most common questions I receive:
MYTH: Changes can‚Äôt be made to an IEP once it is signed until the next annual IEP meeting.
FACT: Parents can ask for a new IEP meeting anytime, for any reason.
HELPFUL HINT: Put your request into writing including your reason for wanting to meet. This will keep the lines of communication open and create a paper trail to ensure that your request is met in a timely manner.
MYTH: Special Education only occurs in a special education classroom
FACT: The law requires special education students to be taught in the Least Restrictive Environment. This means that children should be educated with non-disabled peers in the general education classroom to the maximum extent possible.
HELPFUL HINT: If your child receives resource to support a specific skill, adding inclusion time will help transfer these skills into the general education classroom.
MYTH: If I disagree with my child‚Äôs IEP, I shouldn‚Äôt sign it.
FACT: Each state is different. In North Carolina, you have the option to sign either agreeing or disagreeing with the IEP.
HELPFUL HINT: If you disagree, include your concerns and which parts of the IEP you disagree with. The LEA (Local Education Authority, in most cases the school administrator) at the meeting will be able to guide you with next steps to take.