Before parents rush to the extreme of hiring paid representatives, it helps to first understand whether they have a reason to worry or not. Sometimes the anxiety parents have about the special education process comes from just not understanding what the heck is going on.
You have a right to meaningful parent participation in the IEP process. That right is protected by federal law.
If a parent’s right to meaningful participation in the IEP process is not honored, a Free and Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) is denied to the involved student by the involved local education agency (usually a school district). Failing to honor a parent’s right to meaningful participation in the IEP process can have serious consequences for public education agencies.
The first step in protecting your right to meaningful parent participation in the IEP process is getting a good grasp on what is already going on with your child, what isn’t helping and should stop right away, and what else can be done to make sure your child receives a FAPE in the Least Restrictive Environment (LRE). Understanding these critical factors is imperative to knowing what to ask for during IEP meetings as a parent and whether to agree to a proposed course of action or not.
We help parents achieve knowledge necessary to make informed decisions in the IEP process by conducting records reviews and writing up our findings and recommendations in a report, which we then provide via email and discuss with parents by phone or, if possible, in person. In reviewing our report with the parents and discussing our recommendations, we provide coaching and guidance on how to make the recommended requests and assert any claims deemed worth pursuing by the family.
The parents are encouraged to ask any questions they may have about their child’s IEP during the report and recommendations review meeting. The purpose of this meeting is to help the parents formulate a strategy for protecting their child’s right to a FAPE, including their own right to meaningful parent participation in the IEP process, informed by the results of our records review and discussions with the parents.
We charge a flat rate of $500 for our records review services, including our report and a meeting with the parents to discuss our findings and recommendations. For younger students, this can include their entire educational file. For older students with more voluminous records, it will be limited to the last two years, with the exception of older records that may be germane to any violations that may have occurred and/or any substantive claims the student may have for compensatory remedy.
We use a secure cloud server (user ID and password required) for sharing student records electronically. If you hire us to review your child’s special education case as told by his/her student records, report our findings, and meet with you to discuss them, we will set you up with a user ID and password to our cloud server so you can safely share any records you have. We can even request records from your child’s local education agency on your behalf and, if possible, have them remitted electronically by the local education agency to our cloud server, which you will then be able to access.
If you are interested in having your child’s educational records reviewed by a professional educational consultant and advocate, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will make the appropriate arrangements with you. Knowledge powers solutions for parents and we appreciate the opportunity to provide parents with the knowledge and understanding they need to meaningfully participate in the IEP process.