IEP Compliance: IEP NOT BEING FOLLOWED, WHAT DO I DO?

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Kim: My child is in middle school and on an IEP. The IEP is not being followed and now my child is failing. 2 weeks ago we had our annual IEP meeting, at that time he com only failing 1 class. We put in his IEP that he will write down all assignments and each teacher will initial it. And that he’d be moved into a smaller math class. He does take a notebook but does not write anything in it and the teachers don’t check or initial anything, and he’s still in his regular math class. He is now failing 3 classes. What do I do? They won’t answer my e mails.

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Dee

We have a BIP in place for my son. The regular BMC teacher was out and there was a sub and the school called asking me if he had his meds that morning. Are they even allowed to ask that? I’m more than willing to share that information, and did, but it seemed to me that they were trying to shift the blame instead of owning the fact that he was having issues due to the sub not following the BIP, not whether he had his medication. He is on a non-stimulant, so it was irrelevant anyways.

Andrea

Kim,
I can relate. The same thing happened with my son but it wasn’t explicitly in the IEP even though we discussed it and the meeting and the team made me think it would be covered. I felt like we were all partners working together to give my son the best education to help him succeed in school. Then the reality was a blank notebook and my son still not knowing his assignments. Also preferential seating didn’t happen in the regular edu class and that was in the IEP. I didn’t find it out until I participated in a field trip at the end of the year and sat in his desk. It was in the back of the room right next to the coat closet. All I can say is you live and you learn. Document and print your emails because the team will try to deny everything. It seems almost criminal to me.

Jill G

Not following an IEP is a compliance issue. One way to “escalate” a compliance issue is to file a state complaint. The complaint process is pretty straight forward – you file a written complaint, the state investigates, the school is asked to respond, and then the state will rule. In some states, parents even are given the opportunity to have the state intervene informally without actually having to file a complaint.

Another option you have for resolving issues is requesting a due process hearing. We often think of hearings as useful for resolving issues involving what’s the best service or placement. But they can also be used to resolve compliance issues, if they rise to the level of denying a child a free appropriate public education. This might be a good option if the issue persists, and you have other concerns about the IEP or placement.

Your local parent center can give you info about accessing these options where you are (parentcenterhub.org/find-your-center/).

Jill G

Kim –

You do have a few options.

First, you should always try to resolve it locally first – this helps maintain relationships. You mention that you tried e-mails, perhaps now you try another means. If I was in your position, I would write a letter to the Team chair at the school detailing the issue, what type of resolution I would hope, and asking for a Team meeting to discuss it. I would send a copy to the district’s special education director, and follow up with a phone call.

Having taken these steps, if the school still did not respond, I would have no problem considering other options.