As a teacher, you will encounter all kinds of students, including some with exceptionalities who are legally entitled to receive special education services. Knowledge of the laws that govern special education is essential in professional practice. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) outlines these laws and provides the framework in which teachers must operate to provide educational services for individuals with disabilities. The ability to share and articulate these steps to parents/guardians and students is essential to establishing mutual expectations and ongoing communication that supports the development and achievement of students with disabilities.
Imagine you are a teacher for a student who has been referred for a special education evaluation. The parent has agreed to the evaluation but is unfamiliar with IDEA and the IEP process and wants to meet to learn more about these topics.
Create a simple visual that summarizes the 12 key components of IDEA. This visual could be a 1-2 page handout, chart, brochure, etc. and should provide the reader with a clear understanding of key terms and processes associated with IEPs. Include IDEA citations relevant to each component.
The visual should address the following:
- Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE)
- Least Restrictive Environment (LRE)
- Referral Process
- Evaluation Process
- Eligibility Determination
- IEP Components
- Parent and Student Involvement
- Quarterly Progress Monitoring
- Annual Review Process
- Procedural Safeguards
- Prior Written Notice
- Related Services
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