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Encouraging Student Participation in IEP Meetings

October 19, 2021
Special Education, Transition Planning

There are many ways to include students in their Individualized Education Program (IEP) meetings, and every student is different. Below are some essential tips to remember when encouraging student participation in IEP meetings.

  • Speak openly  with your student about their disability, classification, and learning needs.
  • Explain to your student  what services they should be receiving, and what those services are meant to provide.
  • Slowly integrate the student  into IEP meetings (e.g. 10 minutes for the first meeting, then increase from there).
  • Encourage student preparation.  Choose a section of the IEP and have your student prepare something to add, such as interests, strengths, and preferences.
  • Remember that the IEP isn’t just about academics. Including a student’s extracurricular interests is one great way to let the teacher know some engagement strategies for your student.
  • Inform teachers and service providers  that you’re working on this and ask for their support.
  • Speak with the student  about their transition goals and how they are going to work on them.
  • Encourage your student  to set their own academic and postsecondary goals.
  • Remember it is a process.  Student participation takes time and requires ongoing conversations about your student’s disability and needs.