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Individualized Education Program (IEP) Issues


Overview of the IEP Process

Click here to view a list of 50+ IEP Topics/Issues

Autism Speaks Guide Explains IEP Process

A new guide created by lawyers for the Autism Speaks advocacy group leads parents through the process of obtaining individualized education programs for their children. The guide, which reviews the legal rights of students and parents, offers information useful for children with a range of disabilities.

Michigan's Individualized Education Program (IEP) Development Process
In an effort to build an integrated system to implement requirements and practices that are compliant AND focused on results for students, the Office of Special Education and Early Intervention Services (OSE-EIS) has developed the following awareness documents and training materials for the Individualized Education Program (IEP) Development Process.

Passing Math: The Michigan High School Diploma and the “Personal Curriculum”

How Students w/Significant Disabilities Can Use Choice in the IEP (PDF)
For students with significant disabilities, especially for students who are unable to talk, meaningful participation in the IEP is difficult. These students often struggle to communicate basic choices about daily activities; therefore, their personal curriculum goals are not usually solicited as part of the IEP process. Yet, we all agree that student participation in the IEP process is an important goal.

How to Use a Parent IEP Attachment
Until recently, I had great difficulty getting districts to take parent attachments seriously. Recently, I was told that the district could not attach such a document to the IEP! I turned to Prior Notice in the Procedural Safeguards section of the statute. Prior Notice specifies that requests made by the parent must be accepted or rejected , and that the IEP team must list the reasons for accepting or rejecting the proposal. (Note: Section 1415(c) describes the specific requirements for Prior Written Notice; see pages 100-101 in
Wrightslaw: IDEA 2004)

IEP Tools for Teachers: Supporting Students in General Education
This 5-part series includes important information on People First Language, Creating Meaningful IEPs, Curriculum Modifications & Adaptations, Collaborative Teaming, Positive Behavior Supports, Social Relationships & Social Networks, Transitions, Ideas That Have Worked, and features an Annotated Bibliography of Inclusion Resources.

IDEA: Behavior, LRE and Parental Involvement

The Project Forum, which facilitates improved services to children and youth with disabilities by gathering and sharing information that supports changes to policy and practice at the national, state and local levels, released the State and Local Implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) study. Download the three sections of the report: Increasing the Use of Positive Approaches for Addressing Behavioral Issues of Students with IEPs, Placing and Serving Children with Disabilities in the Least Restrictive Environment (PDF) and Increasing Involvement of Parents of Children with Disabilities (PDF).

IEP Tactics & Strategy: The "Letter to a Stranger"
What is a "Letter to a Stranger"? When you write letters to a school, these letters will be read by strangers. Many important decisions about your child's education are made by strangers. What impression will your letter make on a stranger? Will the stranger see you as an angry, negative complainer? Or will the stranger see you as a rational, thoughtful parent who is expressing valid concerns?

A Student's Guide to the IEP (PDF)

The Student’s Guide series is written especially for students with disabilities.

Planning and Prevention Strategies Reduce Problems at IEP Meetings

Many parents and educators approach an individualized education program (IEP) team meeting with a certain amount of caution. Parents and educators feel this way even though evidence shows that most IEP team meetings proceed rather quickly and quietly. IEP team participants may worry that some-thing will go wrong or that participants will disagree, or they may feel unprepared.

IDEA 2004: What You Need to Know About IEPs & IEP Meetings

When Congress reauthorized IDEA 2004, they made significant changes to Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) in several areas.

Seven Habits of Highly Effective IEP Teams (PDF)
Fundamental in our efforts to become proactive members of lEP teams is adopting an attitude that is collaborative, facilitative, and responsible. To be proactive requires a shift in our thinking from a deficit-based model of education to a capacity model.

Complaint Procedures for Special Education - click here (PDF; Michigan)

IEP Pop-Up

Feeling disenfranchised?  Tired of showing up at your child's IEP and leaving dazed, confused, and frustrated?  Or feeling like every time you make a suggestion you hit a brick wall?  Find responses you can use to common "hurdle talk" - words and attitudes that keep the IEP meeting from being successful - as you are advocating for your child's needs.

Looking for a specific word or phrase?  Check our Glossary.

Download the (pdf) Special Education Glossary by Calvin and Tricia Luker

Self-directed Support Corporations (SDSC) and Microboards (PDF; size=101k)

What A Difference a SDSC Can Make: Joshua’s House Incorporated! by Jackie Golden "Self-directed Support Corporations (SDSC’s) and Microboards share the same philosophy. Simply put they are a small legal provider for one person with a disability, but then again, they are much more than that. Both the SDSC and the Microboard put control and direction of supports back in the hands of the person with the disability needing the supports." Read this article to learn more about this exciting concept.


 IEP Topics


Accommodations/Modifications Getting an Aide Positive Behavior Support (PBS)
Assessment (Testing) Gifted Learners Prior Written Notice
Assistive Technology Goals & Objectives Related Services
Auxiliary & Ancillary Services Hearings Response to Intervention (RTI)
Behavior Intervention Plans High Stakes Testing Use of Restraint
Bilingual Issues & English as a Second Language (ESL/ELL)


(Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act)

Right to Copies of Records: FOIA and FERPA

Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

Child Find Homework Sample Letters
Complaints Inclusion Self-Determination
Driver's Ed Independent Evaluators Sports & Recreation
Due Process Least Restrictive Environment (LRE) Standardized Testing
Eligibility Math Resources Suspension, Expulsion, Discipline and Problem Solving
Evaluation Maximum Potential Taping the IEP
Extended School Year (ESY) MEAP Testing Teacher Certification
Extra-Curricular Activities Mediation/Dispute Resolution


Free and Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) MI-Access: Michigan's Alternate Assessment Program  Therapy (OT/PT/Speech/Sensory Integration/Music/Alternative Therapy)


Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

Other Resources NEW! Tips from Parents
NEW! Forms (IEP, IFSP & Others) Person Centered Planning Transition & Guardianship
Functional Behavioral Assessments NEW! Placement Issues Transportation

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