Know Your Rights
There are those of us who have been attending IEP meetings for over 25 years. We know the rules, we know the laws. And, there are those of us that have an expertise in child development, clinical psychology, and education who can determine the most appropriate services or programs so that children will make effective progress in school.
Unless you have a command of both these areas (regulatory knowledge and expertise in evaluation as well as mental health and education) don’t go to IEP meetings alone. There are not many people qualified in all these vital areas who work on behalf of families. School systems may have the necessary knowledge, and they certainly know all the rules and regulations. But as a parent, how do you know if the information you are provided is thorough and complete?
You have the right to invite people to attend the meeting with you. Bring an expert who has an extensive background in understanding the needs of your child and experience working with school systems. Accountability, objectivity, and qualified experts are the primary ways to insure that your child is receiving all the services and programs they are entitled to under special education law.