Students: Get Ready to Participate in Your IEP Meeting with a Handout for the Team

Students of all abilities have the right to a solid education to get ready for adult life. Students with Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) have a right to participate in IEP meetings to make sure the program is a good set-up for higher education, vocational training, work—whatever comes next after graduation. Schools are required to invite Read More

Get Ready for Your Meeting with a Handout for the Team

Parents and students who go to meetings prepared and organized are more likely to come away feeling heard and with a good action plan. This article can help you and your student prepare a one-page handout to share with the school or another service provider. Most important is to highlight the student as the most Read More

Advocacy Tips for Parents

When a child has a disability, parents often learn that getting their child’s needs met requires persistence, organization, and advocacy. Advocacy is an action. A person is an advocate when they organize the work and press onward until a goal is achieved. Laws that protect the rights of students with disabilities also protect parents as Read More

Student Rights, IEP, Section 504 and More

Getting the right help for students with disabilities is made easier when families learn key vocabulary and understand how to use it. PAVE provides videos to support learning about student rights and how to work with the school to get individualized support. Video number 1: Pyramid of Rights Protections for Students With Disabilities The first Read More

Behavioral Health Toolkit for Navigating Crisis, School-Based Services, Medical Services, Family Support Networks, and More

You can print this toolkit as a PDF! Click to download. When a child struggles to maintain emotional well-being, the whole family is impacted. Parents can feel confused about where to go for help. This toolkit provides an overview of information about crisis response, school-based services, medical systems, family support networks and places to advocate Read More

Toolkit Basics: Where to Begin When a Student Needs More Help

When a student has unmet needs and may need new or different school-based services, what to do next can feel confusing or overwhelming. PAVE provides this toolkit to support families in taking initial, critical steps. These guidelines apply regardless of where school happens. If your family is new to Washington State, military connected, or you Read More

Sample Letter to Request an IEP Meeting

When a student has an Individualized Education Program (IEP), their IEP team is required to meet and review the program at least every year. The annual review date is listed on the cover page of the IEP document. Family caregivers can request additional meetings, and this article includes a sample letter families can use to 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

What Parents Need to Know when Disability Impacts Behavior and Discipline at School

A Brief Overview Full Article Behavior is a form of communication, and children often try to express their needs and wants more through behavior than words. When a young person has a disability or has experienced trauma or other distress, adults and authorities may need to put in extra effort to understand. Missed cues and Read More

Recovery Services: What Families Need to Know as Schools Reopen

A Brief Overview Students with disabilities who have not been fully served during years of the COVID-19 pandemic may have the right to additional school-based services to help them get back on track. These additional services may be called Recovery or Compensatory Services. Read on for information, including guidance from the federal government. A family-friendly, Read More

Tips to Organize Your Child’s Medical and School Documents

A Brief Overview Keeping track of important documents for your child’s health can save you time and give you less stress. Take advantage of technology! If you choose to build a digital storage system, integrating it with your smart phone will make it easy to share information on-the-go with doctors, day care providers, school staff, Read More

Mental Health Education and Support at School can be Critical

A Brief Overview Alarming statistics indicate the pandemic worsened many behavioral health outcomes for young people. Governor Jay Inslee on March 14, 2021, issued an emergency proclamation declaring children’s mental health to be in crisis. President Joe Biden issued a Fact Sheet about the nation’s mental health crisis on March 1, 2022, as part of his State Read More

Dyslexia Screening and Interventions: State Requirements and Resources

A Brief Overview Washington passed a law in 2018 requiring schools to screen young children for the indicators of weaknesses associated with dyslexia and support literacy across all grades. The law took effect in the 2021-22 school year. Dyslexia is a Specific Learning Disability. Students with learning disabilities are eligible for an Individualized Education Program Read More

School to Adulthood: Transition Planning Toolkit for High School, Life, and Work

You can print this toolkit as a PDF! Click to download Looking to the future can feel exciting, hopeful, confusing, overwhelming—or all emotions at once. For families supporting a young person with a disability, it’s never too soon to begin planning to ensure a smooth process from the teen years toward whatever happens next. This 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