Complaints about the public school system in California and across the country are plentiful. However, in recent years, great strides have also been made to improve the learning experience for students in all grades, especially those with special needs. Parents who are new to the system may feel overwhelmed, so it is good to know that there is guidance and support available, such as when navigating the IEP program for the first time.
It is helpful for concerned parents to seek experienced support, such as that which is offered by The American Advocacy Group in California. Such support can be particularly effective for parents who have children with autism, Down Syndrome or other health conditions that affect their learning skills. If a problem arises where a parent believes a school district has denied a child an IEP or is not updating one to evolve with changes in a child’s needs, additional guidance and legal support may be sought.
Key issues in IEP development to help a student achieve full potential
An Individualized Education Program is customizable. In fact, no two are the same because each one is written to accommodate the needs of a specific student. The following list provides a basic overview of steps a parent can take to ensure that his or her child has an IEP that fits his or her needs:
- Parents will want to compile a detailed list of a child’s needs.
- A formal assessment request should be sent to the school board.
- Parents should attend the IEP meeting with teachers, counselors and all other school officials who are involved in a child’s program.
- A parent will want to make sure regular reviews occur in case a child’s program needs to be modified.
A parent may request a meeting with a teacher, guidance counselor or school administrator at any time, especially if an IEP is not meeting a child’s needs.
In California and beyond, there are attorneys who provide legal assistance to families facing issues regarding IEPs or other education law matters. A parent should not hesitate to reach out for support, as needed.