Sample Letter to Request an IEP Meeting

When a student has an Individualized Education Program (IEP), the school is required to review the program every year. The annual review date is listed on the cover page of the IEP document. Family members/caregivers can request additional meetings, and this article includes a sample letter that families can use to formally request an IEP Read More

Sample Letter to Request Evaluation

A Brief Overview Washington State requires special education referrals to be in writing (WAC 392-172A-03005). Anyone with knowledge of a student can write a referral. The state provides a form for making a special education referral, downloadable from a website page titled, Making a Referral for Special Education. The form is not required—any written request Read More

Sample Letter to Request a Functional Behavioral Assessment

When a student’s behavior gets in the way of their learning and/or the learning of others, the school is responsible to figure out how to support behavioral expectations. One way to do that is to assess why the student might be acting out and use that information to consider how positive behavioral interventions might teach Read More

Steps to Read, Understand, and Develop an Initial IEP

A Brief Overview A first-time IEP document is a lot to absorb. This article provides tips to help family members read through a draft IEP and prepare to participate on the IEP team that finalizes the Individualized Education Program before services begin. Remember, the school’s first version is a DRAFT, and family members of the Read More

Tips for Communicating as a Member of the IEP Team

A Brief Overview When families and schools meet to discuss a student’s special education program, they can find Common Ground by remembering that everyone wants the student to receive a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE). Two short videos, A Tale of Two Conversations, provide a quick look at how a meeting might feel like one Read More

Quick Look: How to Prepare for a Virtual Meeting

Schools and families continue to meet virtually to discuss special education services during the closures related to the coronavirus pandemic. Here are tips to help family members prepare for remote meetings to discuss a student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP), a Section 504 Plan, evaluation for special education services or something else related to a special Read More

Get SMART About Tracking Progress and Updating Goals with Your IEP Team

Holiday break is a good time to check on your student’s progress in school. You can take another look at the Individualized Education Program (IEP) and compare the goals to current progress. If you don’t have a current progress reports on IEP goals, mid-year is a good time to ask school staff to provide them. Read More

Get Ready for School with IEP Essentials

A Brief Overview Each student has abilities and skills. A thoughtful Individualized Education Program (IEP) can highlight abilities and provides the supports needed for the student to learn. This article will help parents understand how to participate in the IEP process. Every part of the IEP is measured against this question: How does this help Read More