The first half of the school year is coming to an end. As a parent of a student with learning disabilities, your first concern may be to check on child’s progress in special education. For example, if your child is in speech therapy, has their been improvement in their articulation?
One way for parents to understand if their child is making strides is through quarterly reports mandated by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act of 2004 (IDEA). Unfortunately, these progress reports don’t really provide specific details that are enough for a parent to trust their child is making progress or not.
So, if you’re a parent of a child with learning disabilities, you’re probably thinking: “What can I do if I don’t think my child is “making expected progress” toward IEP goals?”
There are a couple of things:
Request The School’s Initial Comprehensive Evaluation of Your Child
Right at the moment your child was being considered for special education placement, the school conducted an evaluation. In this evaluation, there were several parts including your child’s work samples, achievement tests and more. Make sure you have a copy of this evaluation and read over this document again. As you look over everything, ask yourself, “Do I agree with my child’s school?”
Review Your Child’s Individual Education Plan
Look over the goals you and your IEP team set for your child in the beginning of the school year. By cross-referencing quarterly reports you’ve received as well as observations you’ve made, has your child hit any goals? Or have they lagged behind?
Seek an Independent Educational Evaluation (IEE)
If there is any doubt of your child’s progress, it is your right as a parent to seek an independent educational evaluation at the school’s expense. However, it is important that you have information (you call pull from the initial evaluation and IEP) to support your request for an IEE or it will be denied.
A final step for parents to take is to continually monitor their child both their attitudes towards schoolwork and interaction at home.
What are some actions you’ve taken to make sure your child is hitting their IEP goals? Let us know in the comments below!
Source: Great Schools