When a California student has a special need that may affect his or her learning, schools are required by law to accommodate those needs. Each student is different, and each one has the right to an individual plan that will ensure he or she has what is needed to succeed in the classroom. Parents can learn about the ways the school will support their child by attending a meeting for an Individual Educational Program.
Fighting for student rights
Parents may need to advocate for the rights of their special needs students, and one way they do that is by knowing what’s in their child’s IEP. During an IEP meeting, parents will discuss their child’s needs and concerns, and the following things may be expected to happen:
- The teachers and others who assist with the education of the child will discuss his or her current level of performance and plans for future improvement.
- During the meeting, parents, teachers and other parties will discuss annual goals for the student.
- The educational team will discuss the tools and plans used to support the student in his or her specific needs.
The purpose of an IEP is to provide an individualized plan for the specific student, and parents have the right to pursue what they think is necessary for their child.
A knowledgeable advocate
It can be intimidating to navigate special education legal issues alone. California parents may benefit significantly from the support and guidance of an experienced attorney. They may also find it helpful to seek assistance when preparing or attending an IEP meeting regarding their child’s needs in school.