By Jan Baumel, M.S.
You asked to have your child evaluated for special education services. Now it's time for the IEP meeting, but you're not sure what to expect. What's in an IEP? How can you prepare for the meeting?
The IEP, Individualized Education Program, is a written document that's developed for each public school child who is eligible for special education. The IEP is created through a team effort and reviewed at least once a year.
Before an IEP can be written, your child must be eligible for special education. By federal law, a multidisciplinary team must determine that (1) she's a child with a disability and (2) she requires special education and related services to benefit from the general education program.
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), a federal law, requires certain information to be included in the IEP but doesn't specify how the IEP should look. Because states and local school systems may include additional information, forms differ from state to state and may vary between school systems within a state.
The members of the multidisciplinary team who write your child's IEP include:
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