Going back to school can be an exciting but stressful time! For some parents, it means preparing for IEP meetings and making sure your child is still getting the proper services that they need. Here are some helpful tips to make sure that you and your child are prepared to start the new school year on a high note!
- Organize! You know that when it comes to special education, there are tons of meetings, paperwork and other documents all about your child’s education. Try to keep a calendar of all of your child’s events and set up a binder to keep all the special education documents organized!
- Keep track of phone calls, emails, notes sent home with your child, and conferences! Create a ‘communication log’ for yourself and be sure to note the time and date of these contacts. These communications might be important at meetings in the future!
- Make sure your child’s IEP still fits their needs! Be sure to go over your child’s IEP before the school year starts so you know what to expect from the school. Be sure to note when it expires and if your child is up for reevaluation. If you feel like you need to make adjustments to it, contact the school about having an IEP meeting.
- Keep lines of communications open! It is important for you and the school to communicate often. If there is anything you feel like the staff of the school needs to know about your child, don’t hesitate to contact them. The more proactive you are about your child’s needs, the better!
- Establish routines for before and after school! Be sure to make sure that your child knows the routine for before and after school. School can feel like a break in the routine that they have established over the summer, so make sure you commit to starting a routine to stick with for the school year.
- Educate yourself about special education news! The more you know about your child’s disabilities and what they deserve at school, the better you will be able to advocate for your child. Try to keep up on what is new in special education legislation, especially is it will have an effect on your child’s education.
- Attend school events! Be sure to take advantage of events thrown by the school, they are a great way to connect with teachers and other staff. It is also a great way for them to get to know you and your child’s needs in a more personal way!