If only the teacher really knew my child…
That’s where you, as your child’s “case manager,” jump in.
If the teacher does not know your child – then what? You need to get to know your child’s teacher.
Pat Howey advises parents to:
- Meet with your child’s teacher(s) to discuss your child’s special needs.
- Give a picture of your child to your child’s teacher. Teachers are more likely to take a personal interest in our child and remember your child’s special needs if she has seen a picture of your child.
- Take extra copies of your child’s IEP when you meet the teacher. Never assume you child’s teacher has seen or had time to read your child’s IEP before school begins.
- Attend your school’s Open House – another chance to meet your child’s teacher.
- Make a list of important things about your child. List the 5 most important things that the teacher needs to know about your child. Explain why these things are vital to your child’s success.
What would you like special-education teachers to understand about you and your child?
On About.com, Children with Special Needs, Terry Mauro asked her readers to share their thoughts. Readers Respond: What Would You Like Special Educators to know?
Your Child’s Teacher: Highly Qualified & Well Trained?
- Did you know you have a right to know the qualifications of your child’s teachers and paraprofessionals?
- Did you know that your school district must notify you of your right to request information about the qualifications of your child’s teachers and paraprofessionals?
At the beginning of the school year, the school district must notify parents of all children who attend Title I schools of their right to request information about the qualifications of your child’s teachers and paraprofessionals.
- Is your child being taught by a substitute teacher?
If your child has been taught by a teacher who is not highly qualified for 4 consecutive weeks, your school district must notify you of this fact. This requirement applies to substitute teachers, many of whom do not meet “highly qualified” requirements.
Find out how to learn more about your child’s teacher and teacher qualifications in Parent’s Right to Know at
Do you think the teacher needs more training to work effectively with your child?
Turn to what IDEA says about support and training for school personnel. Wrightslaw: All About IEPs and your Wrightslaw: Special Education Law book – 20 U.S.C. 1414(d)(1)(A) and the federal regulations 34 C.F.R. 300.320(a)(4).
IDEA envisions services that are provided to the parents or teachers of a child with a disability to help them to more effectively work with the child – that’s why “supports for school personnel” was included in this section of the law.
Learn what to do when you feel No Teachers are Trained to Work With My Child.
We hope you and your children will have a great school year!