Well, if you are reading this you have a child who has or needs a 504 or an IEP. It’s a long journey to obtain educational accommodations. So, once you establish the 504 plan or IEP services grab a binder and keep updating with the current copy for your sanity.
Let’s talk about the 504/IEP first. My degree is K-6 elementary education. I have 4 children and departed from the teaching field during my husband’s 20 year military career. I was able to remain the constant caregiver for our children over the many moves and deployments over their young years.
My 4 kids are completely different socially, emotionally and educationally. As a parent you know when one of your kids is working up to their potential… or when he/she is struggling. If you suspect they are struggling educationally or if a teacher has suggested a problem pursue the testing as fast as you can. Getting a disability diagnosed so educational accommodations can be implemented is a long process but one that is so important for your child to be successful.
Once you have the testing and the accommodations the path is easier ….unless you move. This is where having all of your own copies is extremely helpful. Your hand carried records may arrive sooner than transferred copies. If you move to another state the school will do their own testing and create their own list of accommodations.
The IEP should be reviewed annually anyway so if you move over the summer the new school should honor the former accommodations during the process. Let’s put it this way- they can’t provide less per the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act which is federal.
HOW TO GET STARTED
Grab a binder, make a label and toss in some page protectors.
So, what should you keep in the IEP binder?
-copies of school records
-copies of any special services that should be provided
-all diagnostic paperwork for the disability
-the current IEP and list of accommodations
– IEP coordinator/team contact info for your child’s school
-state handbook or guide to special education
These are powerful documents that can be used from kindergarten through college to ensure success for your child.
Always remember no one advocates for your child like you do! Know their needs, their rights, their strengths and weaknesses to fight for their success.
Bring out the inner Momma Bear and gather the documentation together just in case😉