Written by parents who have been through the US special education system, this book cuts through the jargon to provide other parents with a no-nonsense road map full of valuable first-hand insights and tried-and-tested advice.
The authors clearly describe:
· the special education process, including the school hierarchies parents are likely to encounter and etiquette to be aware of when dealing with school personnel
· the information parents should expect to see in school evaluations and Individualized Education Programs (IEPs), and what to do when this information is missing or insufficient
· problems parents may encounter when the needs of the school conflict with the needs of a child, including how to deal with such situations and when to seek legal advice
· the importance of organizing special education documentation and establishing a 'paper trail', and how to begin this process
· why transition planning is so important, and transition services parents may want to consider for their child.
Demonstrating that parents really do have the power to make special education work for their child, this empowering guide is essential reading for parents of children with disabilities who are new to the special education system in the US, as well as those who feel frustrated with the system.
|Publisher:||Kingsley, Jessica Publishers|
|Product dimensions:||5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.50(d)|
About the Author
Table of Contents
Foreword by Robert K. Crabtree, Esq.. Preface. How to Use This Book. Three Important Acronyms. Disclaimer. Introduction: Past, Present and Future. The Beginnings of Special Education. Development of State and Federal Laws. Special Education Funding. The Future: Privatized Special Education? Fighting the Last War. 1. Getting Started in Special Education. An Overview of the Special Education Process. Entering a Complex Legal Situation. What Parents Can Do. 2. School Personnel. Administration. Regular Education Professionals. Special Education Professionals. Related Service Providers. Proper Credentials. Special Education Etiquette. What Parents Can Do. 3. Outside Professionals. When Do You Need an Outside Professional? Finding Professionals. When is a Professional Right For Your Child? Professionals to Consider. What Parents Can Do. 4. Understanding School Evaluations. The Reality of School Evaluations. What to Expect in an Evaluation. Reading a School Evaluation. The Alternative: Independent Educational Evaluations. What Parents Can Do. 5. Conflicts of Interest. Conflicts for School Employees. Conflicts for Outside Professionals. An Ethical Dilemma. Our Experience With Conflicting Interests. Dealing With Conflicts of Interest. What Parents Can Do. 6. The IEP: Powerful Tool or Worthless Paper? What Keeps an IEP From Being Effective? Developing an IEP. What IDEA Requires. Ten Essential Parts of an IEP. What Parents Can Do. 7. Writing Effective IEP Goals. Vague Goals vs. Specific Goals. Actual IEP Goals and How They Should Have Been Written. Coordinating Goals With the Service Delivery Grid. An Example of a Measurable IEP Goal. IEP Goal Hall of Shame. Comparing Goals and Progress Reports. What Parents Can Do. 8. Team Meetings. Goals of a Team Meeting. Team Members. Advance Planning. Making Team Meetings Productive. Meeting Follow-Up. How Trust is Lost. Teams Say the Darndest Things. What Parents Can Do. 9. The Paper Trail. Why Organize Your Papers. Starting Down the Trail. Types of Documents to Manage. Using Your Paper Trail. How Schools Use Their Paper Trail. A Parent's Right to Inspect School Records. What Parents Can Do. 10. The Legal Process. When Do You Need a Lawyer? Finding the Right Lawyer. Mediation. Demand Letter. Due Process Hearing. Settlement Agreements and Confidentiality. What Parents Can Do. 11. Transition Planning and Graduation. Why Planning is Important. Transition Planning and Services. The Graduation Game. Alternative Diplomas and Graduation Certificates. What Parents Can Do. Afterword. Appendix A: Test Score Conversions. Appendix B: Special Education Glossary. Appendix C: Special Education Resources. References. Index.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
As a long-time special education professional-turned-advocate I simply cannot say enough about the value of this book for parents. I recommend it to anyone who is going through the special education process for the first, or fiftieth, time. Readers will quickly learn that Judith and Carson Graves' book, Parents Have The Power To Make Special Education Work: An Insider's Guide, stands in refreshing contrast to the ubiquitous jargon and bureaucratic double-speak that too many parents encounter during their special education journey. With a robust Foreword by the well-regarded Robert K. Crabtree, Esq., this accessible gem gives beginner and veteran parents alike a simple, straightforward overview of federal and state special education laws and their relevance to common situations parents may encounter. More immediately, this book offers practical strategies for parents navigating the seemingly never- ending maze that has become special education in the United States. Main chapter topics include: understanding the perspective of school personnel and how and why conflicts of interest arise, understanding evaluation reports, writing measurable IEP goals, handling Team meetings, why keeping good written records is essential, the legal process, and planning for transition to adulthood. Given the Graves' at times maddening experiences with fighting for services for their now-grown son over many years, they could be forgiven for being bitter. Yet nothing could be further from the truth. To the contrary they have taken their experience as a family and turned it into something truly compelling and constructive, from which other parents, caregivers, and professionals can learn. Chapter 7: Writing Effective IEP Goals in particular had me enthusiastically nodding with each paragraph and marking up the margins. With real examples of IEP goals and benchmarks this chapter alone is worth the cost of the book. Additionally I have not seen a better discussion elsewhere specifically for parents on the relevance of writing specific, measurable goals as it relates to tracking a child's progress over time. I think parents will also find chapters 8 and 9 especially useful as they speak to the daily realities of meetings and paperwork and how to handle these situations effectively and productively. I expect this book will be on my shelf for years to come not only as a go-to reference and strategy manual but as an eloquent reminder of an important and perhaps overlooked truth: Parents do indeed have the power to make special education work!
A valuable resource for families! This book is extremely well written and offers parents a simple yet informative guide, filled with helpful tips and tangible advice in advocating for their child’s special education needs. As a pediatric clinician, I would highly recommend this book as a great resource for parents as well as professionals who are addressing the academic needs of students with disabilities and special educational needs.