IEP Meeting: SCHOOL OFFERS NO HELP, SAYS DAUGHTER NEEDS TO WORK HARDER

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Kellie:  My daughter (16) in 9th grade, tested 1st grade level in written expression, 4th grade level in math and 5th grade level in reading. High school does not offer special classes or help so she is in all regular classes. Spec Ed teacher told my daughter in IEP meeting that she just has to try harder and won’t modify her algebra work because she needs to do all of it in order to learn it. After 9 weeks of hours and hours of tutoring, she is failing algebra and English and science. Am I crazy or should my daughter be able to do the 9th grade work? She is now having anxiety issues and now doesn’t want to go to school. Just want your thoughts on this subject.

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Susan S

What does the IEP say about the support she gets in the gen ed class? How many sped minutes does she get per week in reading, writing and math? Who provides this? Does a resource teacher come in? Is there a sped teacher in the classroom? What is the disability?

It sounds to me like your daughter needs intensive remediation in reading, writing and math. Since she is more than a grade level or so behind I really don’t see what accommodations and modifications would be effective in helping her understand the 9th grade curriculum. For example if she is taking Algebra and is being asked to write and solve equations and she is still figuring out place value and how to add, subtract, multiply and divide how is modifying the work going to help her understand?

Sharon L.

If your daughter is working at the levels you state she must have accommodations & modifications. Based on the triennial evaluation it appears that her goals and benchmarks on the IEP need to address written expression, math and reading. If you do not agree with the testing results you may request an outside evaluation at the school’s expense. Put the request in writing giving them 5 days to respond & they should send a list of places you can have the testing done. You do NOT have to use any of these places. We went to an attorney that specialized in spec ed & got a referral for someone to test our son. Once you receive the results the school must consider them. AT this point you will come to an agreement with the school or can file for mediation or due process.