Every child is unique and needs support from their teachers and guardians to ensure they’re academically successful. Every parent should get involved in their child’s educational journey, especially if their child has a learning disability or is on the autism spectrum.
It’s important to keep in contact with your child’s education leaders throughout the year, aside from parent-teacher conferences and meetings. You and your child’s teacher should be a supportive team and a resource to help your child thrive in new ways.
Here are a few questions to ask your child’s special education teacher to ensure that they have a successful school year.
What Should I Know About My Child’s IEP?
Your child’s teacher and school administrators will draft an Individual Education Plan (IEP) for your child at the beginning of the year.
An Individualized Education Program is a legal document under United States law that is developed for each public school child in the U.S. who needs special education. It is created through a team of the child’s parent and district personnel who are knowledgeable about the child’s needs.
There’s no “one size fits all” plan; your child’s teacher will customize the education plan to your child’s needs.
When the teacher is writing your child’s educational plan, ask them questions about what tasks or lessons they’re emphasizing and how you can better support them at home. You, the teacher, and the administration can work together to ensure that everyone helps your child.
How Can I Support My Child at Home?
Learning begins at home, and there are endless ways you can help your child flourish in areas they’re struggling with. You can support them in ways outside of the traditional classroom setting, and not every activity has to be “boring.” You can use creative activities and games.
If your child is in ABA Therapy for kids, you can help support them at home alongside the treatment they are receiving outside of the house. Make sure to educate yourself on the methods of treatment and reinforce this at home! Remind them of what they’ve learned and how they can apply it to their everyday school life. Inform your child’s teacher of these principles to ensure they’re getting support at school and home.
What Are My Child’s Strengths?
When you receive your child’s IEP, you will know what areas your child needs extra support in and how you can ensure they flourish. However, instead of focusing on the struggles, you should also ask where your child succeeds the most in their academic and school life. By knowing their strengths, you and your child can work together to invest in their talents, lead them to success, and help boost their confidence!
How Often Should We Meet?
An important question to ask your child’s special education teacher is how many times in the school year you all should meet to discuss your child’s strengths, progress, and what they need to work on. This is the perfect time to schedule meetings in the future to keep an eye on your child’s behavioral and academic progress.