The Effective Steps to Making Special Education Decisions
 
 FAPE Trumps All!

 
This weekend I went to the Wrightslaw conference on the recent law changes for IDEA.  You know that law that governs special education and that we all interpret different depending on what role we play on the IEP team.  Well, I'm excited to say that I've learned a few things.

The most important fact that I learned that we must all keep first in our mind is that a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) trumps all other criteria in the law.

Doesn't that sound simple?  Now, if we all can get the understanding that attending the school closest to the student's home or finding the least restrictive environment are secondary to FAPE, I think our team decisions of services and placements would be much more agreeable.

That's our challenge as we wrap up the school year.  You truly need to decide if each and every child has received FAPE and if not, it's time for change.


Three things to consider for FAPE:

 
1.  Were measurable and objective goals set with high expectations and achieved?
 

 
2.  Were support services implemented as listed on the IEP?

 
3.  Was research based, peer-reviewed curriculum used?

 

Of course, there are many more things to consider when evaluating whether a child has received FAPE during the recent school year, but the most important thing is to get started in considering FAPE first, above all.


Parents: Learn how to evaluate FAPE on a monthly basis. Starting NOW! Click on the button below.
 

                                                               IEP Action Plan for Parents