Goals: ARE THESE “SMART” GOALS?

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Deb:  Our son is dyslexic and in 6th grade. His IEP team suggested these 2 goals for him……..(GOAL 1) He will independently use a variety of strategies to decode and identify the meanings of unknown words in 4 out of 5 opportunities………….(GOAL 2) He will identify which assistive technology tool is approporiate to use to complete a writing/reading task in 4 of 5 opportunities…….OUR CONCERN: Even though they give a measurement (4 out of 5), these goals dont seem very SMART to us. What are your thoughts/suggestions?

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5 Comments on "Goals: ARE THESE “SMART” GOALS?"

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Yes. Your state parent training & information project can assist you. http://www.parentcenterhub.org/find-your-center/

I disagree. I think the goals are missing a lot of information.

A measurable goal should include:
– the conditions that will be present when the goal is evaluated
– the specific behavior/action expected from the student
– the criteria for measurement
– how the goal will be evaluated
– when the goal is expected to be completed

Goal #1 needs –
– the conditions (e.g. an assignment, test, or random list of words?)
– the behavior (e.g. what strategies will he use? how will an observer know he’s using them?)
– how it will be evaluated (e.g. by teacher observation or test?)
– when it will be completed (e.g. by the end of the IEP period?)

Goal #2 needs –
– the conditions (e.g. what reading/writing tasks? What AT tools)
– the behavior (e.g. how will he identify what tool is appropriate? how will an observer know?)
– how it will be evaluated (e.g. by teacher observation?)
– when it will be completed (e.g. by the end of the IEP period?)

A good goal will also be relevant for the student, and challenging yet attainable within the given time frame.

What can you do?

You can ask them to re-write these goals as measurable. Tell the Team that you’re not sure exactly what’s being measured, and coach them through making them measurable (i.e. what conditions will be present?, what behavior is expected?…).

You can re-write the goals yourself and propose the revisions to the Team. The book “Writing Measurable IEP Goals and Objectives” is an excellent resource (buy 2 and give the other to the writer of those goals).

Do either of these ONLY if you think the goal areas are relevant to your son.

If you don’t think they’re relevant (or think other goal areas should be included), pick out the areas of highest need from your son’s IEP. These can be found in the Present Levels of Performance – usually the areas that will be modified. Of these, choose the ones most important to furthering your son’s vision.

Please keep in mind, Deb, that as the parent, you are a full member of the team, and can propose edits to their goals, and you can also draft your own goals completely from scratch.

I think they are not too bad as far as problem solving and being independent. He does need to know different strategies and how to use his assistive tech. You might also need to add some actually reading and writing goals. Not sure where he’s at but writing/typing a 3 paragraph paper or single paragraph (maybe use a rubric to grade the paragraph). Reading fluency/comprehension goal may also be useful.

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