Who is your child’s first teacher? You are. Who is your child’s most important role model? You are. Who is responsible for your child’s welfare? You are. Who has your child’s best interests at heart? You do.
You know your child better than anyone else. The school is involved with your child for a few years. You are involved with your child for life. You should play an active role in planning your child’s education.
The law gives you the power to make educational decisions for your child. Do not be afraid to use your power. Use it wisely. A good education is the most important gift you can give to your child.
As the parent of a child with a disability, you have two goals:
1. To ensure that the school provides your child with a “free appropriate public education” that includes “specially designed instruction . . . to meet the [child’s] unique needs . . .” (20 U.S.C. §1401)
2. To build a healthy working relationship with the school.
What Advocates Do. Special education advocates work to improve the lives of children with disabilities and their families.
Are you ready to advocate?
Here is a list of supplies that will help you get started:
- Two 3-ring notebooks (one for your child’s file; one for information about your child’s disability and educational information)
- 3-hole punch
- Package of sticky notes
- #10 Envelopes
- Contact log
- Small tape recorder