Navigating Special Education: What Every Parent Needs to Know

by | Sep 13, 2023 | IEP

Is your child struggling in school and you feel like your voice isn’t being heard?

Do Individualized Education Program (IEP) meetings leave you feeling confused and powerless? You are not alone. Navigating special education can feel overwhelming for even the most engaged parents. But knowledge is power. Arm yourself with the tools to advocate for your child.

The mission of the Special Education Academy, founded by Karen Mayer-Cunningham, is to empower every parent, educator, and advocate with the knowledge and skills to get special education services right for children. Karen believes that when we get it right for the child, we get it right for everyone. The Virtual 2-Day Special Education Advocacy Intensive training equips you with the tools you need to collaborate effectively as part of your child’s IEP team. With a shared understanding of special education processes and practices, you can work together to make student-centered decisions and achieve successful outcomes. Whether you’re a seasoned advocate or just starting out, this training will give you the confidence and expertise to drive the IEP process to meet your child’s unique needs.

Some key takeaways:

Eligibilities – There are 13 categories of disability under IDEA law that make a child eligible for special education services, such as autism, learning disabilities, intellectual disabilities, etc. Understanding the criteria for these categories empowers you to ensure your child is evaluated appropriately.

Evaluations – A comprehensive initial evaluation looks at your child across multiple domains, including cognitive, academic, speech/language, medical, psychological, and more. Know the assessment options to get a full picture of your child’s needs.

IEP Goals – Well-written IEP goals address your child’s unique needs across settings, including academic, behavioral, communication, social-emotional, and functional skills. Provide input on the goals that will allow your child to make meaningful progress.

Accommodations – Accommodations level the playing field and remove barriers to learning. Be specific about the accommodations your child requires to access grade-level curriculum. Too many accommodations may signal the need for more intensive services.

Placement – Special education services are meant to be delivered in the least restrictive environment. Understand the continuum of placement options from general education class with support to more restrictive settings.

Preparation is key to being an equal partner in IEP meetings. This training provides the foundational knowledge on the IEP process, eligibility, evaluations, goals, accommodations, and placement to set your child up for success.

Sign up for the 2-day intensive to become your child’s best advocate.


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