I will be attending my first IEP meeting for my almost 3 yr old son. I hope he gets summer preschool as his current Sp, Ot and special educator will stop coming to our house when he turns 3 next month. The school district did have him evaluated for autism. I have no idea what to expect. If anyone has good ideas/tips or can help with all the new words :-) they will be using...ie what does para-one mean...like an aide?.....I would really appreciate it! Thank you <3
It can be extremely overwhelming and frustrating when beginning this process but, I promise, it's totally worth it being your child's greatest advocate! I would suggest buying or downloading a copy of "From Emotions to Advocacy-The Special Education Survival Guide" by Pete and Pam Wright (they have a Kindle version for only 12.95). It's a super easy read filled with TONS of information. You can get it on their website at www.wrightslaw.com. You can also read through the website because it's also filled with information that will be helpful for you. I am in the process of becoming a parent advocate so you can feel free to contact me and I will help you any way I can (free of charge of course!) Just PM me! :)
I agreed the WhrightsLaw's book. Their website is fabulous. I suggest you to do a Positive Student Profile. If you google it you'll get direct links w/some positive student profile format. It's wonderful tool..
IEP meetings are not to bad most times, if the school system is good, they do actually try to help you out most times. I do however advise that you stick to your guns, and if you think that there is something your child needs that they are not getting, because lets face it if they do not have to spend extra money they won't. We fought to get my daughter a fridge and microwave in her classroom, and they did not want to give it to us, but they did after we would not leave it alone. We even told them we would pay for it, but they would have it in the class, and they finally just did it on their own because they knew we were serious and were not going to leave it alone. (my daughter on eats select foods). we also have it set up for my daughter to do full days all year round, and they have contracted New England Childrens center to come into their school and run the program for my daughter which is costing them a pretty penny, but my daughter needs better qualified people, and they did not have any that could handle her.
A paraprofessional would be an aide. I highly recommend buying a copy of the NoLo Complete IEP Guide by Lawrence Siegel. Definitely worth the $25 pricetag IMHO.