IEP Issues

25 Apr

I was not even planning to go to Thomas’s IEP meeting this year.  I thought that we had it out last fall and all of those issues just sort of disappeared once I required data and he got a new para.  Last month, the new para wrote a note how perfect he was and said there was nothing to report so she was wondering why he needed the data sheet.  So I said it was okay to not take the data as long as we were kept informed of any problems.

 

So now this teacher is raising issues again and she told Jane that she was going to request that he attend some sort of community-based resource 1x a week in addition to special Olympics.  There’s some concern as to him being able to function in a regular PE class as these are large classes and PE tends to be on the loud, wild side anyway.  So they want to look at adaptive PE.  The thing is, adaptive PE, special Olympics and the community-based program would effectively decrease his hours in regular education by about a third. 

 

The regular setting is where he has the majority of his problems.  He would go to a special setting and he would probably succeed with flying colors because he is so high functioning.   But it is the regular setting where he has to learn.

 

The other major concern is that they are pretty much dragging people off the street to fill special education positions.  There is a mass of incompetence and/or inexperience that makes up the special education programs around the county.  I think that bothers me more than anything, as qualified regular elementary teachers are easier to come by. 

 

ACK!   I’m busily following my own advice on the whole IEP process, trying to get a parent input statement squared away.  I still don’t really want to go and it would be nice if these things could be kind of ironed out in advance.  I’m glad I wrote that IEP series so now I have a guide to work from!

 

On a related note, we got Percy’s notice on Monday for his IEP on May 1st.  HELLO!?!?  What happened to getting notice?  Fortunately his biggest issue will be to either continue resource or do a consultative service.  He’s really pretty much “normal” aside from some oddness he got mostly from his brother.  He has a best friend his age that acts pretty much like Thomas.  I think its because they both ride the special bus.  I need to remind Jane that he needs to take the regular bus next year as the special bus schedule has been erratic and crazy this past year.  Since regular routes stay the same regardless of who is added to the system, they run pretty reliably.  Plus he’s ridden it before and did okay and he actually has a couple of friends in our neighborhood to look out for him.  That’s one that Jane can easily handle.

 

I have no IEPs scheduled for the rest of the week.  Can you believe it?  Next week I have a bunch of middle school IEPs to attend.  Those are always interesting.

 

I also have my remaining 3 scheduled in 3 weeks: Jim, Spaz and Taz.  I’m having them all the same day.  Call me insane or crazy, but it was the only way I could be sure I would have all of my principle members present.  At least I am finally seeing the end of all this. 

 

So to all of you parents who are going through this: I HATE IT TOO!

And to all of you teachers writing these things: I DON’T LIKE IT EITHER!

 

Hey! We’re coming up on only having 4 more weeks of school!  WOOHOO!

 

Dick

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4 Responses to “IEP Issues”

  1. Jessie April 25, 2007 at 6:43 pm #

    Hi there. I’ve been following your blog for quite some time, as I am an aspiring educator.

    I have a feeling that I’m one of those special education teachers they just “drag off the street”. I have been accepted to the NYC Teaching Fellows for elementary Special Ed. I am incredibly smart, intuitive, and I have a challenge-tackling mentality and the best of intentions. I am ready to learn a lot, and learn fast.

    Is all hope lost for me already? Am I bound to receive NO respect from other teachers, my principal, and parents because I’m only 22?

  2. Dick April 26, 2007 at 6:59 am #

    Thanks for commenting!
    It will be a challenge, for sure. Especially when one is as young as you, respect is something you’ll have to earn and it might be an uphill battle for a bit. OTOH, if you find an older mentor teacher (along the lines of Ms. Ris) you can learn a lot while working on the job.

    My first year, I did have administrators, parents and other teachers jump on me with hobnailed boots to the point where it resembled a white collar gang initiation. I made mistakes and paid for them. However, years later, I have some knowledge, experience and some level of respect. You’ll have to be tough. Miss Dennis (of Mad Tedious) is an example of a gritty “off-the-street” teacher who seems to have found her groove but it’s not where she started. And that’s something else you’ll have to work through; where to go and what to do.

    Respect is not something that I look for as a teacher but am happy when it comes, no matter the source. That’s just sort of the nature of the life that chose me!
    dick

  3. Erin April 26, 2007 at 4:39 pm #

    Hey Dick,

    Just wanted to let you know that I fixed my comment settings so that anyone can comment on my blog. I want your feedback! Hope you’re keeping your sanity during this busy season in the land of Special Education!

    As always, I am encouraged and enlightened when reading your blog. Thank you so much for all you do.

  4. Dick April 27, 2007 at 6:47 am #

    I see what I can do. I do a lot of my blogging after school while I wind down for the day and the school filters love blocking Blogger Blogs and rarely allow comments. But you do have an entry that gives me a good idea for a post!

    dick

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