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The Special Ed Advocate Newsletter
May 29, 2002

Issue - 166

ISSN: 1538-3202

In this Issue

Tactics & Strategies: How to Disagree with the IEP Team

How to Handle Disagreements at IEP Meetings (Or Playing 20 Questions with the Devil)

IEP Meetings & Follow Up Letters

Reviewers Say FETA is "Superb"

More Good Cases About IEPs

Transition Statements in IEPs

Free Pubs About IEPs & Transition

Subscription & Contact Info




Dear $subst('Recip.FirstName'),

t Wrightslaw, we help you gain the information and skills you need to navigate the confusing world of special education. This issue is the last in a four-part series about IEPs.

Highlights: How to use tactics & strategies in IEP meetings; how to use follow-up letters to get answers to your questions; book reviewers love FETA; more good cases about IEPs; transition statements in IEPs; free pubs about IEPs and transition.

The Special Ed Advocate newsletter is free! Please forward this issue or the subscription link to your friends and colleagues so they can learn about special education law and advocacy too. We appreciate your help!

Read back issues of the Special Ed Advocate at

We added new topics to our Free Newsletter Flyer which has grown to two pages. Please print and distribute the new 2 page Free Newsletters Flyer:

Do you want to learn more about special education advocacy? Learn how to start a FETA Study Group:

1. Tactics & Strategies: How to Disagree with the IEP Team

Pete answers questions from parents about how to disagree with the IEP team. Learn about the Rules of Adverse Assumptions, how to use tape recording and thank you letters to clarify issues; and how to deal with an IEP team bully.

Read Tactics & Strategy Session: How to Disagree with the IEP Team

See also
IEP Goals and Objectives: A Tactics & Strategy Session with Pete Wright:

2. How to Handle Disagreements at IEP Meetings (or Playing 20 Questions with the Devil)

Frustrated at IEP meetings? IEP team does not answer your questions? Parent attorney Sonja Kerr devised an approach to deal with the IEP meeting quagmire.

If you are preparing for an IEP meeting, read IEP Meetings (Or Playing 20 Questions with the Devil).

3. IEP Meetings & Follow-Up Letters - How to Get Answers to Your Questions

Parent advocate Pat Howey offers strategies that you can use to get the IEP team to answer your questions.

In How to Use Follow-Up Letters to Get Answers to Your Questions, you also learn how to avoid power struggles, deal with IEP meeting frustrations, and use your power wisely.

4. Reviewers: Wrightslaw: From Emotions to Advocacy is "Superb"

"A superb reference, From Emotions To Advocacy is very highly recommended reading for all parents of children in need of adapted or special education services .. . Filled with tips, tricks, and techniques and an immense wealth of resources, from Internet sites to advocacy organizations to worksheets, forms, and sample letters to guide one's written communication." - Midwest Book Review

"If I were asked to choose just one book to help me learn advocacy skills, this is it!" - Suppport for Families of Children with Disabilities Newsletter

"This book provides a clear roadmap to effective advocacy" - DD Quarterly

"To fully comprehend the importance of testing, and what the results tell us, read Chapters 10 and 11 about Tests and Measurements, and Chapter 12 about SMART IEPs - this information is essential for parents and professionals." - Hands and Voices Communicator

In Wrightslaw: From Emotions to Advocacy - The Special Education Survival Guide, you learn:

• How to become an expert about your child’s disability and educational needs
• How to organize your child’s file
• How to use information from tests to understand your child’s disability
• How to use test scores to monitor and measure your child’s progress
• How to write SMART IEP goals and objectives

Wrightslaw: From Emotions to Advocacy includes chapters about evaluations, how to organize your child's file, two chapters about how to use the bell curve to measure progress or lack of progress, and a chapter about SMART IEPs.

Short Table of Contents:

Complete Table of Contents:

"From Emotions to Advocacy is the best, practical, informative, empathetic book on the market. It's amazing and thrilling to be an advocate for 15 years, to read FETA, and feel the thrill of 'Oh, my God! that is so true', and to be able to sharpen my skills." Fran, New Hampshire

Learn more about Wrightslaw: From Emotions to Advocacy:

Order From Emotions to Advocacy

5. More Good Cases About IEPs

When you do research about legal issue, you need to read the statute and regulations. You also need to read caselaw. Here are two more good cases about IEPs - add them to your collection:

Knable v. Bexley City Sch. District, U. S. Court of Appeals for Sixth Circuit.

Child with behavior disorder; discussion of IEPs, draft IEPs, IEP requirements, tuition reimbursement, placement, burden of proof, more.

Kevin T. v. Elmhurst Comm. School District No. 205, U. S. District Court of Illinois

Decision focuses on witness credibility, failure to review and revise IEP goals and objectives, regression of skills, assistive technology, state achievement tests, transition plans, unilateral graduation, and compensatory education as a remedy when a school district fails to provide a FAPE.

(NOTE: This decision is a huge pdf file - you may want to right click the link which will allow you to save it to your hard drive, then open and read it.)

For more good cases, visit our Caselaw Library:

Be sure to download and read our comprehensive article, "Your Child's IEP: Practical and Legal Guidance for Parents" - this article includes several cases about IEPs.

6. Transition Statements in IEPs

Beginning at age 14, the IEP must identify transition service needs. The transition statement includes two components: a statement showing how planned studies (course of study) are related to the student's goals beyond secondary education and a statement of the student's goals beyond secondary education.

In this memo, Transition Statements in IEPs, special ed director Nissan Bar-Lev shows how to include transition statements in the IEP.

7. Free Pubs About IEPs & Transition

The heart of your child's special education program is the Individualized Education Program (IEP). These books will teach you how to write IEP goals and objectives that target your child's problems.

A Guide to the Individualized Education Program (2000)

This publication from the U. S. Department of Education describes how to write IEPs that improve teaching, learning, and educational results. Includes contents of the IEP; IEP team members; writing the IEP; placement decisions; implementing the IEP; revising and revising the IEP; resolving disagreements about the IEP; sample IEP form, information and resources, the federal regulations for IEPs, and guidance about IEPs.

Designing Individualized Education Program (IEP) Transition Plans (2000).

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) requires schools to prepare students with disabilities for employment and independent living. Transition planning that involves students and their families leads to post-school success and independence. Article describes how to design quality IEP transition plans.

More Free Pubs

8. Subscription & Contact Info

The Special Ed Advocate is a free online newsletter about special education legal and advocacy issues, cases, tactics and strategy, and Internet resources. Subscribers receive announcements and "alerts" about new cases, events, and special offers on Wrightslaw books. 

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Read back issues of Special Ed Advocate.

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