Five things parents of a Special Education student should do in the new school year


This is the first guest post on our blog to share important information to our clients.  Many of our clients have children who receive Special Education services and require Special Needs Planning.  With the school year starting up, it's essential that parents be prepared.  Here is a great post from attorney Melissa (Meira) Amster from Amster Law Firm.

1. Review your Indivdualized Education Program (IEP). Read over your entire IEP. Does the IEP address your child’s current issues? Do the assessments still sound accurate? Review the services that your child is receiving. Are they enough services? Is your child spending too much time out of the classroom? Does your child have access to general education peers? Does your child need more Resource Specialist Program (RSP) support?

2. Review Goals and Objectives. Review closely your child’s goals. Is your child meeting the objectives or benchmarks? Are the goals too easy or have they been achieved? Are the goals too hard and will not be achieved in a years’ time?

3. Review Assessments. Do the district assessments adequately describe your child? Do they need to be updated? Do you need to request an IEE (Independent Educational Evaluation)? Do you need to request any new assessments? For example, I find that districts rarely to Assistive Technology assessments, even though the service is needed.

4. Request an IEP meeting. If you have any questions about your child’s IEP, need to up-date goals, or services, you should request an IEP meeting. The district has 30 days to schedule an IEP, so it makes sense to request one now so changes can be made before too much of the year goes by.

5. Introduce yourself. Introduce yourself to your child’s teacher and providers. Discuss your child and his or her strengths, as well as weaknesses. In a casual manner, make sure they have the read the IEP and understand the goals. You would be surprised how often teachers don’t read IEPs until report card time. Discuss how you will communicate (text, email, notes, log, etc…) with the teacher or service provider.

For any questions please contact me at melissa@amsterlawfirm or for more information visit my website

Here is a post on Amster Law Firm's blog that Shannon Liu Shair wrote about Estate Planning and Special Needs planning.