Whether you’re headed to a parent-teacher conference or a formal IEP meeting for your child with ADHD, it can be intimidating to feel like it’s you against the rest of the team which may consist of teachers, administrators, guidance counselors, and specialists.
Here are 4 things I wish someone had told me when I was new to the world of IEP meetings and adhd. #ieps #adhdparenting #pblogger Click To Tweet
Here are four things I wish someone had told me when I was new to the world of IEPs:
1. Stay Calm. While it’s tempting to go all mama-bear on these people who seem to be failing your child, do everything in your power to take deep breaths and remain calm. Trust me, I’ve done this both ways. You have more credibility if you can keep your emotions in check.
2. Record It. Even if you take meticulous notes, it’s likely, you’ll want to go back and review what everyone said. Also, in the unfortunate case that you’ll need help from a student advocate or lawyer, you’ll want them to have the full picture. Rather than use the fact that you’re recording as a threat (which is my natural tendency), emphasize that you want what’s best for your child or that recording is the best way to share information with the other parent.
3. Know Your Rights. You should receive a booklet of parental rights when you request an IEP meeting. If not, look on your school system’s website. It will outline a timeline as well as other important rights. It’s your job to make sure the school system is treating you the way it’s supposed to. Sometimes it’s not malicious, but an oversight. You are your own best advocate.
4. Don’t Sign Anything. Meetings can be emotional and overwhelming. Despite what the team will pressure you to do, don’t sign anything in the moment. It’s your right to take it home and process all the information. Then you can make a more objective decision if the outcome of the meeting is a good fit or if you need to continue to advocate.