The IEP Meeting: How to Prepare (Step 3)

by Melissa on November 15, 2010

You sent in your request.

Your kiddo’s been assessed.

You’ve done all that you can do, and now you’re sitting and waiting for the IEP meeting.

Most parents don’t know that there’s something else you can do before you walk into that meeting.

Did you know you can request the results from the assessments five days in advance?

That’s right. Five days. It is, without a doubt, one of the smartest things you can do.

Are you wondering how that will help? I’ll fill you in.

From the perspective of a teacher who’s gone to countless IEP meetings as a teacher, these meetings can be pretty overwhelming.

I don’t know what it’s like for you, as a parent. I haven’t walked in your shoes.

But from the many parents I’ve seen who look like deer caught in the headlights, I can only imagine how extremely difficult it is when you’re walking in unfamiliar territory, listening to strange acronyms being tossed around, feeling like your child’s future will be determined in 45 minutes.

I don’t want you to feel like a deer in the headlights.

I want you to walk in there feeling as comfortable and confident as possible.

When you get the results five days before the meeting, you’re giving yourself a chance to process the information. You’ll get a clear view of where your child’s at.

Once you know this, you can figure out where your child needs to go. Hire a consultant, or meet with a former teacher that you really trust to help you understand the results. Most importantly, you will give yourself time and space to come up with goals.

Getting these results early gives you a chance to plan. It’s like having a map on a road trip. Better yet, it’s like having that iPhone app that gives you directions and highlights the best routes based on current traffic conditions.

Only it’s about a million times more important.

I know that. You know that. So, get those results five days in advance. Meet with someone to help you fully understand the results before you walk into that meeting.

You’ll know you did everything you possibly could to make sure your child’s future is the best it can be.

Melissa Lubaszka is the founder of Tandem Teaching and teaches in the inner-city. She blogs weekly about tips parents can implement to enhance their connection with their children and ways to bring out their children’s inherent gifts. Contact her for a private consulting session.

{ 2 comments }

Heather November 15, 2010 at 9:51 am

Thanks Melissa!! Not all parents know this fact. We have our second IEP meeting in Dec and we are getting into the nitty dritty of the this process. It is amazing how much you have to be on top of to keep the process going.

Jim November 19, 2010 at 5:21 am

Going prepared to any meeting is always helpful, even more so a meeting about your child! Great tip to know!