Become An Expert On Your Child’s Disability
When parents come to me for help with their child’s IEP, the first question I ask them is “What is your child’s IEP eligibility?”
Most parents respond by saying, “I don’t know”.
I liken this to a medical diagnosis. If our child is sick, we take them to the doctor to get a diagnosis. The doctor may take some tests and ask you questions regarding the symptoms your child is experiencing.
The doctor will observe your child and conduct a physical to gain more information. After which, the doctor will provide a diagnosis for your child and develop a medical plan to address the diagnosis in an effort to heal your child.
If the doctor couldn’t find the cause of why your child is sick, you wouldn’t accept that, would you?
So why would you not become knowledgeable about the reason why your child is not learning?
When a student is not learning, or not making adequate educational progress at school, the school district is responsible for assessing your child to find out WHY. If the student is found eligible under IDEA(Individual with Disabilities Education Act), an assessment will render an eligibility label according to the standardized scores, observations, and questionnaires filled out by teachers and parents.
Those results will prescribe an educational plan to address the student’s individual areas of educational need. This is the IEP process.
The educational eligibility is similar to a medical diagnosis that is the foundation for developing your child’s IEP. If a parent is not knowledgeable regarding the child’s origin of the areas of need, a parent cannot be an equal participant in their child’s IEP development. This causes parents to be at the mercy of blindly accepting whatever the school personnel tells them is best for their child.
It is always a parent’s first response to trust their local school district staff members. Parents believe that the administrators and educators know what is best for their child’s education, and that they will do the right thing to provide what their child needs. However, at some point, parents realize that this is not the case.
When parents come to me for help they can be angry, resentful, and feel betrayed by their local school district that has failed to meet the needs of their child. They may even have remorse, feel guilty about trusting the district and not educating themselves about their child’s disability, and what their child needs to make progress at school.
If parents do not become the EXPERT on their child’s disability and understand how it IMPEDES their ability to access the curriculum, parents will remain a VICTIM of school officials. They may never be successful in developing a strong IEP that will help their child to succeed in school.
The school district staff members are not going to tell you what to ask for, or give you everything your child needs. Unless, parents learn your parent rights under IDEA and their State Education Code and learn how to Advocate for their child. Their child will be At-Risk of not meeting their potential in life because they never received an appropriate education.
- Are you willing to take this risk?
- Is this situation fair or ethical?
But unfortunately, this is the reality of our special education system today. This is why it is so important for parents to wake up and understand the gravity of the situation for their child’s future. If parents don’t learn to advocate for their child to receive an appropriate IEP, their child will not most likely not be able to attend college or be gainfully employed.
- Are you ready to embark on your journey of advocacy?
- Are you willing to become an expert regarding your child’s disability and how it impedes their ability to learn and be successful in school?
Don’t wait another day to take action to learn how to drive the development of your child’s special education program at your next IEP meeting!
Would you like to schedule a consultation with me to get the answers you need regarding your child’s Individualized Special Education program? Click here to schedule.
Check out this quick video where I share more about how to request an IEE, which is the best way for you to obtain an accurate diagnosis for the correct eligibility for your child’s IEP.