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  1. #1
    lizzywednesday is offline Red Diamond level (10,000+ posts)
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    Default Triumphs and Tribulations - Sharing Thread

    I have been blowing off a lot of steam here and in the BP about various issues, but I wanted to share a small triumph:

    DD has FINALLY been permitted an IEP that covers her ADHD, social skills, and speech-articulation issues.

    I fought, wrote letters, and requested evaluations.
    I had meetings.
    I filled out surveys.

    DD is finally protected, and she has guideposts to measure progress through the year.
    She has an Educational Assistant (whose manner I do not like at all, but it doesn't seem to bother DD) for ELA, which should help her step up her writing skills.
    She has regular meetings with the school counselor set to continue through June.

    She will have a plan going into middle school next year. We just have to get through 5th grade.

    So ... what's new with everyone else?
    ==========================================
    Liz
    DD (3/2010)

    "Make mistakes! Get messy!" - Miss Frizzle

  2. #2
    KrisM is offline Clean Sweep forum moderator
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    I'm glad to read this! It sounds like you did a ton of work and it finally paid off.
    Kris

  3. #3
    Liziz is offline Emerald level (3000+ posts)
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    Hooray! I'm so glad that you finally got this! Your DD is lucky to have you to advocate for her!
    Lizi

  4. #4
    Philly Mom is offline Diamond level (5000+ posts)
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    Amazing!! Great job!


    Sent from my iPhone using Baby Bargains

  5. #5
    jgenie is offline Red Diamond level (10,000+ posts)
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    Congrats!! You are an awesome mom and you have done an amazing job advocating for your DD. So very happy for you!!
    for Carmen

  6. #6
    lizzywednesday is offline Red Diamond level (10,000+ posts)
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    Thanks!

    I'm exhausted, but I feel like we've made some progress ... and we'll have a better transition plan as she heads to middle school in September.

    I don't know what accommodations in middle school look like yet, but having the IEP in place now gives me a lot of reassurance that we will have a good structure for success there.
    ==========================================
    Liz
    DD (3/2010)

    "Make mistakes! Get messy!" - Miss Frizzle

  7. #7
    hbridge is online now Sapphire level (2000+ posts)
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    Quote Originally Posted by lizzywednesday View Post
    Thanks!

    I'm exhausted, but I feel like we've made some progress ... and we'll have a better transition plan as she heads to middle school in September.

    I don't know what accommodations in middle school look like yet, but having the IEP in place now gives me a lot of reassurance that we will have a good structure for success there.
    One thing you want to make sure you do is review the IEP with the team BEFORE The school year starts. Make sure all the teachers and everyone who works with your child knows what is in the document and that everyone is in place (hired, on-board, ect.). The IEP is a fantastic first step, but if it is not properly implemented, it is not going to be effective. We spent a small fortune on an advocate to have an IEP drafted after a tough first year in middle school. That IEP was NEVER actually implemented and was mostly ignored. To say the year was a disaster is an understatement, the child is still recovering YEARS later. I should have been more involved in ensuring that everything was in place before the school year began.

  8. #8
    niccig is offline Clean Sweep forum moderator
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    Default Triumphs and Tribulations - Sharing Thread

    So glad you finally got this in place. Totally agree with talking to DDís teachers at beginning of each school year. While the teachers should be informed, I know it doesnít happen, and in middle school and high school they have multiple teachers.

    Transitioning to a new school is also when notifications slip through the cracks. I work at 2 schools across the road from each other. One is TK- 1st and the other is 2-5. Parents have to fill out the enrollment pack for the 2nd-5th grade and the office takes what the parent puts on the enrollment form as the district student file isnít transferred over until short time after new school year. I know the kids transferring and have found mistakes for the student and itís traced back to information on the parent form. It would eventually be found once the district file was received. It helps if staff at the new school know about the new students coming in. I contact staff at new school if one of my students is transferring to them.

    As sheís transitioning, I would reach out the middle school as a FYI my child is coming in with an IEP prior to the new school year. I did this with DS with his 504. I also email his teachers beginning of each year listing his accommodations as a FYI. DS also knows what his accommodations are and will speak up to teacher eg tell the teacher he wants his extended time on tests. I do remind DS to do this early eg tell teacher the day before testing and not just before the test as extended time can mean going to another room for supervision so it has to be organized. Should the teacher know he has extended time, yes, but his teachers have 150+ students. I know how much there is to track, I have 60 students and my memory isnít great. When DS was in middle school I would email teachers about the extra time, but heís now in high school and able to do it himself. Advocating for himself is something he needs to learn.


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    Last edited by niccig; 01-13-2021 at 09:47 PM.

  9. #9
    lizzywednesday is offline Red Diamond level (10,000+ posts)
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    Quote Originally Posted by hbridge View Post
    One thing you want to make sure you do is review the IEP with the team BEFORE The school year starts. ...
    Part of the reason her first marking period was so successful was that we had a transition meeting about what was then an enhanced 504 Plan prior to the start of the school year.

    Her current teaching team was involved in the IEP rollout, which took effect 1/4 (first day "back" after Winter Break.)

    I'm already managing multiple teachers this year - she's in an integrated classroom and 5th graders have separate teachers for ELA, Social Studies, Math, and Science. She also has an Educational Assistant.

    We'll have a year-end IEP meeting in June. I will have to remember to request transition meeting with all of her middle school teachers when I meet the middle school Child-Study Team.

    Quote Originally Posted by niccig View Post
    So glad you finally got this in place. Totally agree with talking to DD’s teachers at beginning of each school year. While the teachers should be informed, I know it doesn’t happen, and in middle school and high school they have multiple teachers.
    Strangely enough, I'm already managing multiple teachers this year - in addition to having a placement in an "integrated" classroom, DD has a separate Math teacher, as well as an Aide/Educational Assistant.

    I will have to make a list of subjects she'll be taking next year so I can ensure all of those teachers are invited to meetings, and that I follow up with emails and letters.

    Transitioning to a new school is also when notifications slip through the cracks. ... I know the kids transferring and have found mistakes for the student and it’s traced back to information on the parent form. It would eventually be found once the district file was received. It helps if staff at the new school know about the new students coming in. I contact staff at new school if one of my students is transferring to them.
    This is part of the standard process, as I understand it, here in NJ.

    I still need to check the statutes. I would rather have the Bluebook cites in my letter when I'm telling them to effing follow this IEP we hammered out over the course of 5 Very Frustrating Years in elementary school, because once you whip out legal references when you're telling the team to jump, suddenly everybody asks not only "how high?" but also "how long do I stay up?"

    For the record, I intend no offense to anyone who works as part of a Child-Study Team or in Student Services; y'all are all rock stars. It's the administrators and school leadership who I tend to find frustrating without the kind of writing I've had to do in the past 10 months.

    As she’s transitioning, I would reach out the middle school as a FYI my child is coming in with an IEP prior to the new school year. I did this with DS with his 504. I also email his teachers beginning of each year listing his accommodations as a FYI. DS also knows what his accommodations are and will speak up to teacher eg tell the teacher he wants his extended time on tests. I do remind DS to do this early eg tell teacher the day before testing and not just before the test as extended time can mean going to another room for supervision so it has to be organized. Should the teacher know he has extended time, yes, but his teachers have 150+ students. I know how much there is to track, I have 60 students and my memory isn’t great. When DS was in middle school I would email teachers about the extra time, but he’s now in high school and able to do it himself. Advocating for himself is something he needs to learn.
    The way I understand IEPs in NJ, especially for educational accommodations of the sort DD is legally entitled to in her new IEP, is we have an end-of-year evaluation with the current (elementary) IEP team for the progress she's made on her benchmarks. We are also supposed to have a transition meeting with the middle school CST to discuss her IEP, goals, and other accommodations.

    I need to consult my copy of the statutes and start flagging/highlighting/underlining so I can draft a letter to the middle school team, which I will send Certified Mail and as an email attachment. Right now, I'm all about a paper trail because my kid needs support and I will ensure there will be H3LL to pay if she doesn't get what's outlined in her IEP!
    ==========================================
    Liz
    DD (3/2010)

    "Make mistakes! Get messy!" - Miss Frizzle

  10. #10
    niccig is offline Clean Sweep forum moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by lizzywednesday View Post

    We are also supposed to have a transition meeting with the middle school CST to discuss her IEP, goals, and other accommodations.
    They may not know who her teachers will be for the next school year, so they may not be at that meeting. As soon as you find out her teachers, send them an email as an FYI. Donít rely on school admin to pass out info to the teachers. I personally tell teachers about my students that are in their class. Admin are to tell them, but I get to it sooner.


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