Wednesday, January 21, 2015

I Need Your IEP Help!

I’m in the process of trying to get an IEP for my youngest son who was recently diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder, ADHD, anxiety and depression. I had my official request meeting with the school and the school psychologist felt that an IEP was not necessary, but instead she recommended that we stick with his current 504 plan. She felt he was performing well enough acedemically.

I told them that I didn’t agree and wanted to initiate the process to determine if he’s eligible for an IEP. I explained that last trimester he had three D’s on his report card and a suspension due to his violent behavior in the classroom.

I also explained that he spent a lot of days in the office as a way to manage his behavior. During this time he was not learning and thus fell behind in his classes.

My concern is that this will continue and he’ll fall farther behind.

My son doesn’t have a learning disability, he’s pretty smart, but he’s challenged by many behaviors and rigid thinking patterns that pull him away from learning. In some cases the teacher can’t even get him to complete an exam. Which is why his grades have dropped.

Can you help me by sharing the ways your child has benefited from an IEP.

Has anyone shared this experience?

I would love to hear from you!

* * *

On a positive note, our son was approved for services with a state regional center. This is an organization that provides support and services to children and adults who have a developmental disability such as Autism and who are substantially disabled because of the developmental disability. Just having a diagnosis does not grant you services.

After reviewing my son’s case, his school records and doctor’s report, a qualified review board felt his disability greatly affected his life.

I wonder why the school doesn’t agree?


  1. I am shocked that the school is not quickly implementing an IEP. My son has the exact same diagnosis list and although we have to fight for everything from the school system, he definitely has an IEP! Are you familiar with Wright's Law site?

  2. You might also sit back & wait... I'd imagine the rest of the school support team would get involved to put an IEP in place ASAP with falling grades & behavior resulting in suspension. You will have to advocate hard for your son but he is worth it!!! Get ready, set, go! :)

  3. Great news for getting in with Regional Center they were a big help to my son. If it wasn't for all the therapies they provided both in home and out he wouldn't be where he is now. My son who is 9 and has High Functioning Austism, ADHD, Anxiety and mood issues has a IEP and it has gotten him the services that he needed. It took awhile fighting with the school because they were making all kinds of excuses. It took us holding him back in 1rst grade to get them to take his problems serious. He was way behind and struggling. So we had him assessed and he got speech, 90 minute special resource pull out. It also gave him more accommodations like needing a quiet spot, taking a small break. We did have issues with one teacher following it because she thought she knew better but a call the Special Ed director fixed that. We are trying to get more because he is so rigid in rules for games that he won't bend even a little so he argues with peers which get him hit or the other day a kid threw a rock at him. Because my son was yelling about what the rules were and that the kid was breaking them and that wasn't how you play.
    IEP's are easier to enforce and are taken more serious than a 504. We are fighting the school now to get an IEP instead of a 504 for my daughter. She has Aspergers, ADHD, Sensory and Anxiety issues. But because she is doing well academically they don't think she needs help. But, she can't work in groups without melting down and spends time out of the class activities. She has been to the office where I had to pick her up after being carried out of the classroom for a meltdown because the sub wasn't following the schedule. Those behaviors are isolating her more from peers and will lead to her falling behind from not being in classroom. Her teacher this year is very accommodating and allowing her to only work in groups for 5 minutes before she can finish on her own, she gives her little breaks especially when it is noisy, also repeat of directions and puts a schedule on her desk if there will be a change. The only thing the school has provided is DIS counseling once a week for 30 minutes:(
    I hope that you can get things worked out for your son at school!

  4. Your child should qualify for an IEP. There are two categories-LD and EBD. Emotional Behavior Disorder is for kids who have behaviors that hinder learning. My son has had an IEP for over 3 years. He is extremely smart but sometimes struggles with behaviors and is suspended or needs to leave the learning environment.
    Our IEP gives him a place to go and switch gears, alternate testing site, extra time on state mandated assessments. Due to his anxiety and mood disorder he sometimes works himself up to the point he can't complete state assessments. Now he can take a break, walk around or rock in his favorite rocking chair.
    There is sometimes a stigma to having a child labled EBD but his teacher is great. The accommodations we have are extended time, able to type assignments, permission and a place to go when upset to name a few.

  5. We are presently trying to get an IEP for my son, age 13, for major depressive disorder (this year has been hospitalized 2x - missing over a month of school). My advice to you is to get an educational advocate asap. This is the route I am following. They know the laws inside/out and are used to dealing with the school systems. I wish you luck.

  6. I wish you all the best in your fight to get the school to cooperate in your son's needs. Those administrators have a fight on their hands :)

  7. I fought the school for 3 years to get my child with bipolar, adhd and anxiety, into an iep. The schools reasoning, is that he is not failing, which is NOT a prerequisite for an iep.
    This website is very helpful when it comes to laws and what they schools have to do to in which to accommodate your child in FAPE:
    I also ordered tons of books and educated myself about what is appropriate for my child and school.
    Please whatever you do, educate yourself. Do not rely on the school to tell you the truth about anything.
    Now that we have had an iep for my child for a year, I now have the option to move him to a private school at public expense. It's a special program in this state, that very few people know of, or take advantage of.

    1. That is great advice, I admit the whole process is very overwhelming. I never knew about the transfer option, nice to know!