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If your child has special educational needs and is receiving services under an individualized education program, now is the time to start preparing for the end of the school year. In addition to concerns about how to best meet your child’s needs during the summer, or whether your child might need or benefit from an extended school year, you also want to assess the effectiveness of the program in place so that you can identify any changes that might be necessary. This blog post identifies the steps you want to take to protect your child’s interests.
Reviewing the Effectiveness of the Existing IEP
The first thing you want to do is conduct a thorough evaluation of your child’s growth and performance this year. This evaluation should be done in conjunction with teachers and other members of the IEP team. You will want to use your child’s IEP as your frame of reference. This should include:
- A review of your child’s grades.
- An evaluation of the progress your child has made toward specific goals, identifying any difficulties or challenges your child encountered.
- Concrete discussions of ways to address the shortcomings of the IEP.
- Modification of the IEP to incorporate necessary changes.
- A discussion regarding whether your child is eligible for or should be granted an extended school year (ESY).
Planning for Your Child’s Summer
If your child is not eligible for or is not perceived to benefit from an extended school year, there are additional steps you can take to help with their educational development.
- Work with IEP team members to identify daily activities that your child can do at home that will reinforce what they have learned and keep them moving forward.
- Discuss the benefits of enrolling your child in special summer activities, from sports programs to summer camps.
Planning for Next Year
Make certain you have a clear understanding of what your child’s IEP will look like next year. Resolving this as early as possible can help you determine your child’s options for the summer. You also want to make certain that you have a complete copy of your child’s special education file.
Contact the Law Offices of Hornstine Law, LLC
At Hornstine Law, LLC, our attorneys work with people in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, using our knowledge, skill, experience and resources to help you get the outcome you want. To schedule a free initial consultation, contact our office online or call us at 215-568-4968 (in New Jersey at 609-523-2222).