IEP FAQs: What should be the “Effective Date” on IEPs?

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“Effective date” means just what it says. If you write an IEP and put the “effective date” as the date of the meeting, then the IEP goes into effect on that date. If you are writing an IEP for the next academic year, the dates on the IEP should indicate that.

A special ed teacher asked this when confused about the school’s sudden change in policy. For ten years they had used the beginning and end of the school year as effective dates.

When doing a periodic review for an IEP, I always put the effective dates for the beginning and end of the school year. We are now being told that we should put the dates from when we have the meetings in March.

In some cases, especially for very young children whose needs change often, and for children with complex needs, the IEP should not be written for a full academic year. There is no way to know what the child’s needs will be 4, 5 or 6 months later.

It can be a mistake to write IEPs in March or April of 2008 that are supposed to meet all the child’s needs related to the disability so far in the future – i.e., between Sept 08 and May or June 09 (18 months later).

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Melissa

If the end date of an IEP is the last day of instruction , example 5.22.19. What happens if snow days are added. Should the IEP state “the last day of instruction for the 2018-19 school year” or should the date that is on the school calendar be stated?

Chuck

Logically the IEP should continue to the end of the school year in this case, unless another IEP has been developed. But your state may have rules on this.

Lisa

We had met on an IEP prior to the 3 year eval, the district provided an IEP at the beginning of January. We partially rejected since no services were on the IEP. The district needed the evaluations done and we elected to have our own evaluation as well. We did not agree with anything and waited for our independent evaluation to be complete. After 5 and half months after our initial meeting we met and agreed upon an IEP. This was right before the summer. On the following school year the distict called to meet in December. The IEP they made had the dates of the first meeting that was prior to the 3 year eval to the following Jan. The IEP dates have 01/05-01/06, but the 5/17 as the next annual review. How can we have this corrected, we believe the IEP should be going to May not Jan