Presentation on theme: "Parents and IEPs Building successful relationships with our children’s schools."— Presentation transcript:
Parents and IEPs Building successful relationships with our children’s schools
Our themes Where are we, as parents, coming from? What tools can we bring? What do we know? Putting it into practice
Where are we coming from? Imagine that you have been in a car accident and you have lost a leg. How does this affect your life?
Parents tell us … Anger Frustration Guilt Loss of control Change in relationships Dependence on others Fear of the unknown
Who comes into our life? Doctors Therapists – OT and PT Social services Rehabilitation specialists Support groups Employment counsellors
Let’s look at the difference Parents talk about their “heart” Service providers talk about “service” How do we tie these together? Acknowledge the difference Build relationships
Relationships – home and school Key to making an IEP work An IEP is a formal “piece of paper” Relationship is what turns that piece of paper into a “living document” Relationship turns it from something to fear into something to work on together
Building that relationship Qualities parents want: Openness Sharing of good and bad Problem solving – together Learning from failure Learning from success What you want also applies to school.
Tips to foster collaboration Keep your meeting small. Know who will attend. Use a visual to track what is being said. Talk about what helps you to be involved. Share your feelings. Keep goals simple. Make failure okay. Ask questions.
Eduspeak Sometimes schools use words that make it hard for us to contribute. You know how your child learns. You know what you do to tell your child something important.
My child learns best when … She has a chance to watch something being done before trying it herself. She sits close to the teacher. Instructions are simple. He can talk about it first. He works with others. He has quiet time to absorb.
Building goals together Keep to 4 or 5 goals. Prioritize what is important. Include both short term and long term goals. Look at how you will measure the goal. Set up a process for reviewing the draft. Ensure goals include what you know about your child.
Sample IEP goal Josh is entering kindergarten. He has physical handicaps and a severe speech delay. At home, you use sign language to help him communicate. He uses a wheelchair and has leg braces. The goal is to help Josh develop relationships with other students in the class.
Putting the goal into practice The teacher will use selected words in sign language with the class, beginning with “hello” and “goodbye.” Josh will illustrate the signs for other students. The parent will bring in a simple sign language book for the class. The speech pathologist will teach the class a song in sign language.
The parent will bring in Josh’s old leg braces to add to the dress-up corner of the class. The classroom will be organized so that Josh sits in the middle of the class, with a small group of boys. Other students will be invited to have a turn helping the aide to push Josh’s chair to the library and the gym.
In summary The IEP is a tool to help our child succeed. It comes alive when we build relationships to support our child. The IEP is the beginning – not the end. Working together, we put our child first.
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