The Road to Mainstream Kindergarten: IEP Meeting

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We had our annual IEP (Individualized education plan) meeting/case conference near the end of April.  Special needs kids with IEPs get annual reviews around the time of year when the document was first created.  For us, it is very close to our son’s birthday since that was when we were transitioning from First Steps to the school system.

At the meeting, we were joined by nearly all of the people who currently work with our son in the school setting: the classroom teacher, OT, SLP, autism consultant for the district, and also the director of the school (standard procedure).  All of the past year’s goals were reviewed and progress (or lack thereof) was noted. Overall, we were very pleased with the course of the last year and most of the people at the conference could also see the big improvements.  We also discussed current setbacks, issues, and the road ahead.  While our little guy is super-smart and will most likely be running circles around his peers academically, the behavior component is not where it needs to be in order for him to succeed in a general education classroom.  Our personal estimate is that he’s a good 2 years behind developmentally, as we have an almost exactly 2 year younger comparison living in our house.  This is where the ABA therapy can really help us.

We assumed that new goals were to be set that would carry into kindergarten, but that was not the case.  Instead, there were just slight modifications on the previous IEP to carry us through the end of this school year and a future “transition” meeting with the necessary adults from the elementary school would cover kindergarten appropriate goals.  The bottom line from this meeting: none of us are ready for what is coming in August.

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