Sunday, November 11, 2012

What to expect at an iep meeting

A lot of teachers (especially the new ones) ask me what to expect at an iep meeting and what happens there.  Before the meeting I talk to my student's general education teacher about their progress and ask them to fill out a form with feedback on how my student's are doing.  From this and my knowledge of the student's progress through my work with them as well as assessments I've given them, I create a draft of the student's annual iep.

At an annual iep meeting there are certain mandatory participants (this may vary from state to state, but generally remains the same.  The ones that are always there are the case manager (the special education teacher), the child's general education teacher, a representative for the administrator and the parent.  In addition, others that may attend would be the speech therapist, occupational therapist, physical therapist, or other related service providers that the student might work with. Our psychologist attends only if it's a re-evaluation (every 3 years), an initial, or if for some reason we need them for an issue or concern that we're dealing with.  This may differ from district to district.

I always start the meeting by stating the purpose of the meeting and introducing all the participants.  Then the general education teacher talks about the students progress in the general education class and strengths and weaknesses.  After that all the other related service teachers speak to the student's progress towards their goals,as well as their new goals and recommendations for the coming year.   Then I speak about their progress towards their goals, and discuss new goals for the coming year, asking for input from the teacher and the parents.  I go through the students iep and talk about the program the service times, and any accommodations and modifications the students can receive.  I open it up for questions, and other comments, then wrapping it up with the necessary signatures for our paperwork.  Once everything is complete (about a week later) I send home a copy with the student for the parent's use.


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