3 IEP Prep Steps - Before Your Next IEP Meeting

Believe it or not... Parents & Teachers & Therapists all struggle with IEP meetings. 

I know, Parents, you are thinking that you are the one that has 12 people around the table who all "know what they are doing", but I'm going to let you in on a little secret... not all teachers & teams feel confident at the IEP meeting. 

In fact, after working with both parents and teams for over 20+ years, and having been a teacher myself AND having a brother with Down syndrome... I can confidently say that nobody feels 100% sure at the IEP table. I mean the stakes are HIGH, we all have to work together to build an awesome education for an exceptional student.

The pressure is ON at these meetings and everyone knows it. So you lose sleep, get hyped up on caffeine and then fuel yourself with determination to do what's needed for an extraordinary child to LEARN. 

So what should we do?

Prioritize and Prepare - the best we can. 

So before your next IEP meeting - Do these 3 things - you'll thank yourself later!

  1. Get a parent input statement crafted BEFORE the IEP Meeting! You can get the exact template and training I use with my private clients, HERE.  Parents, you can create your parent statement and send to the team a few days before the meeting. Teachers, don't shy away from talking to parents are their hopes and concerns for the next 12 months. There's no reason for surprises about what's going on in the parent's mind at the IEP table!

  2. Review the placement options BEFORE the IEP meeting. Here's the catch - don't just KNOW the placement options. SEE the placement options. Parents, want to know why your child is being recommended for a certain program? Go see the options and it will help you understand! Teachers, don't skip this step with your student's parents. It'll make everyone's life easier and we can make better decisions as a team when everyone has better information.

  3. Figure out what didn't work and take it out of the IEP before the meeting. There's no reason to waste time and energy on a goal that might not make sense anymore. Sometimes what we decided 12 or 24 months ago was important, just isn't as important anymore. Remember, the IEP should have the MOST critical skills a child needs, not just random stuff that would be good to know. Time at school is precious, let's use it wisely!

Yes, there are dozens of other steps you can take to prep for an IEP meeting, but too often, these are forgotten. When these steps above are left out - surprises happen, frustration overwhelms, communication shuts down and important details get overlooked.

There really should be NO surprises at an IEP meeting - I'm serious. 

Stay tuned for your next 3 steps of IEP prep - coming up soon!

-Catherine

P.S. Are you struggling with IEP Prep - let me help you - START HERE and access over 25 hours of IEP training for $1

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