Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Derrick: I am the stepparent of the child with autism. I was wondering who is allowed at the IEP meeting legally? Some members are hostile.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
02/16/2020 6:41 pm

I recently attended my son IEP Team Meeting. His mother, who no longer has legal or physical custody arrived unexpectedly, with an entourage. She is contentious and is actually outspoken against my son receiving an IEP. I have been given sole discretion regarding all things IEP related. I did not speak out about her presence in the meeting but had expressed to the director earlier in the month both verbally and in writing that I did not want her to attend. I was forced to sit next to her which definitely interfered with my ability to participate without extreme distraction. Further to that, some very sensitive, personal and private topics were openly discussed regarding my son. I feel that his privacy was violated. please advise and Thanks.

02/17/2020 12:17 pm
Reply to  evan

Legally I do not think the school could have kept her out of the meeting. They might have been able to limit the number of friends, & disruption. To me you are asking for legal advice. Every state has an federally funded disability rights agency. I suggest you find the one in your state.

02/13/2020 6:24 pm

in the state of Louisiana I am trying to have an advocate attend the IEP intervention meeting to see if my daughter can get approved for the testing. The school is stating I am not allowed to have anyone on the phone during this meeting. I already asked to show me a memo or state law stating I am not allowed to have an advocate over the phone. DO you know if that is true or not? Can I have someone on the phone as an advocate from out of state?

02/14/2020 4:51 pm
Reply to  maureen

I suggest contacting your state parent training & information project or Disability rights agency.

11/25/2019 7:56 pm

My school is saying I can’t attend my sons IEP meeting cause I am banned from school grounds!! Can they keep a parent from IEP meeting

11/27/2019 2:42 pm
Reply to  Tonia

Parents are to be part of the IEP team, so the school should try to work with the parent. I suggest contacting the district special ed director, & requesting that an arrangement be made where you can be present. Options – meet away from the school (public library, another campus, or administration building) or participate by phone or skype. Make your request in writing for documentation.

02/16/2020 11:33 pm
Reply to  Chuck

Is there a part of the law that can be cited when school refuses to allow mom on property (won’t even write/email so forget about conference call) and they are out of time for rescheduling and dad is new to IEPs

02/17/2020 12:07 pm
Reply to  Amy

Look at IDEA regulations, 300.501(c) & 300.322 322 say schools “must take steps to ensure that one or both of the parents…are present at each IEP Team meeting or are afforded the opportunity to participate”

02/05/2019 3:47 pm

What is the code for the parent inviting additional participants of the iep meeting?

02/05/2019 7:18 pm
Reply to  Patti

The parents can invite whoever they want. There is no law to say who they can or cannot bring with them.

02/06/2019 11:54 am
Reply to  Patti

Patti – turn to Chapter 2 in your Wrightslaw: All About IEPs book – on page 9. This chapter advises “Do not go to the IEP meeting alone.” You’ll find a whole chapter about IEP Teams and Team Meetings. On page 12, check the section on “People with Special Knowledge and Expertise” about who a parent can invite to the IEP meeting. You’ll find the citations for both IDEA and the Federal Regulations. Or, for the citations in your Special Education Law book see pages 101 and 247. The information you need is in both of these references. Let us know when you have the answer.

Jill G
03/07/2016 6:32 pm

Derrick –

Both the parents and the school can invite to the Team meeting individuals who have “knowledge or special expertise” regarding the child. The inviting party determines that the person being invited has that knowledge/expertise.

So basically the school can invite whomever they want (unless it would violate your child’s privacy under IDEA or FERPA). With whomever they invite, they must notify you in advance.

There ARE some things you can do to change the tone of the meeting. If IEP facilitation is available in your are, that may be a good option. Teams are often better behaved when bad behavior will be witnessed by someone outside the Team. Your local parent center can help you figure out if this option is available (

If it’s not (or the school doesn’t agree), invite in another outsider. You can invite a friend, and tell the school they’ll be there for note taking and moral support (rather than to advocate – which may put the Team even more on guard). Or invite someone higher up in your district’s food chain, like the special ed director.

Your parent center can likely offer addition suggestions and support!

03/07/2016 3:00 pm

Sadly, the law reads something along the lines of people with knowledge of the child as invited by the parents, or District. My experience is that typically some members of the school staff are hostile hen I successfully advocate for my child. I assume that I was messing up their budget. I never found a way to excluded anyone so I stopped trying and tried to learn to not let it bother me.