If a teacher is not appropriately credentialed or qualified to be educating children with unique needs it can lead to a subsequent denial of a student's access to a Free and Appropriate Public Education (FAPE).
What options are available if a school district is not implementing your child's IEP? Some parents find themselves in the unfortunate situation of having fought for their child's educational rights and obtained appropriate services for their child, only to have the school subsequently fail to implement those services.
A California school district faced allegations that it discriminated against students in its special day classes when it reportedly failed to invite them to participate in field trips. San Ramon USD, 114 LRP 7220 (SEA CA 11/25/13)
An inadequate assessment may result in an IDEA violation if the procedural inadequacy impedes the student's right to a FAPE. Capistrano USD, 64 IDELR 55 (SEA CA 2013).
The Continuum of Special Education Placements is something that an IEP team will generally discuss when determining which type of educational placement will be most appropriate for any particular student. This term and the subsequent discussion that follows this term is one that can be confusing for any parent.
Following the determination of an appropriate educational placement, there will likely be a discussion regarding the related services which a student may require. This is another area which can be confusing for parents, given the wide variety of specific related services. Below is a brief outline of possible related services which a student's unique needs may allow them to qualify for:
Preparing for your child's IEP can be a stressful and anxiety creating experience, with this in mind we have a prepared a brief checklist of things to keep in mind during this process:
A child's unique needs can manifest themselves in multiple different varieties. One specific child may have difficulty maintaining attention while in class, which can subsequently affect his/her academic progress, and create a need for special education services. Another child may have difficulty with auditory processing, which may be affecting his/her ability to understand teacher instruction or directives, and subsequently create a need for special education support. Another child may have difficulty interacting with peers, or be exhibiting signs of depression in school, which can subsequently affect his/her ability to progress with regard to their social emotional present level of performance, and also create a need for special education services.
Special educational evaluations are crucial in determining and understanding what an individual student's unique needs are. Examples of educational evaluations include: Psychoeducational Assessments, Language and Speech Assessments, Occupational Therapy Assessments, and Functional Behavior Assessments, among many others.
Following an IEP meeting members of the IEP team will generally ask a parent to consent to the IEP in its entirety. Oftentimes, parents will feel pressured to sign the IEP immediately or risk alienating members of the IEP team. A good option that parents in this situation have is to simply state that they would like to take time to review the written IEP document as a whole, to ensure that they do not have any additional questions or concerns. The IEP document is what governs your child's educational plan, and simply requesting additional time to review the document in its entirety is a complete reasonable request.