Every Child Deserves A Meaningful Education

Recognizing signs of noncompliance in your child’s special education program

On Behalf of | May 22, 2024 | Special Education Law |

It can be heartbreaking to see your child having difficulties at school. As a parent of a child with special needs, you would want to provide them with the best learning experience. Fortunately, schools in California recognize and accommodate the unique learning needs of children through an Individualized Education Program (IEP). An IEP is a legal document outlining support and services tailored to the learning needs of children with disabilities.

However, schools may sometimes fall short in meeting IEP requirements, resulting in non-compliance. As a parent, it is crucial to ensure that your child’s school is providing them with appropriate support and services. To help you identify and respond to potential issues, here are four common signs of non-compliance in special education programs.

There is inadequate progress

If your child is not making significant progress toward their IEP goals, it could be a sign that the school is not implementing the IEP effectively. Reviewing your child’s progress reports and communicating with their teachers could help you stay informed about their development.

The school fails to provide support services

If your child is not receiving the support services outlined in their IEP, such as speech therapy, occupational therapy or counseling, the school may not be in compliance. Regularly checking with your child, their teachers and service providers could help you confirm if your child is receiving the services they need.

The school fails to provide appropriate accommodations

Schools must provide appropriate learning accommodations, such as modifying instruction and learning delivery, to help your child reach their IEP goals. If the school fails to do so, it could indicate non-compliance.

There is insufficient communication and documentation

Your child’s school must maintain open and regular communication with you to discuss your child’s progress and IEP implementation. Moreover, they must provide accurate and up-to-date documentation to help you track your child’s progress. If it is challenging to get updates, if documentations are inconsistent or if your concerns are not addressed, it could be a sign of non-compliance.

Steps that parents can take to address a school’s non-compliance

As a parent of a child with special needs, supporting your child’s learning journey would be one of your priorities. It can be disheartening to see their school not fulfilling their responsibilities to cater your child’s needs. If you believe that your child’s school has violated the IEP, and you want to address this through a formal process, you can file a state complaint. However, this can be an intricate process. It would be good to consult with a lawyer before proceeding with a state complaint to help you go through this process smoothly.