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Getting an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) for your child can be intimidating. Luckily there are supports you can draw on that can help you through this process. On the show today we take a look at how to start the IEP process and share what we learned from going through the journey ourselves. One of the key things we learned about IEPs is that you can start the process without a diagnosis. So, if the lack of a diagnosis has been holding you back, we encourage you to get started as soon as you can! Another crucial element of this undertaking is feeling empowered, supported, and prepared. Hear how you can utilize the resources your school district has to offer and why getting in touch with advocates in your area can be so beneficial. We also take a look at the need for a Full Individual Evaluation (FIE), which is integral to constructing an IEP for your kiddo, and how to start that process. Tuning in you’ll hear a breakdown of the timeline you can expect, as well as details on how it all works. While our experiences have largely been positive, there are plenty of horror stories, and we encourage you to thoroughly document the entire process, including a paper trail of your correspondence and potentially even recording your first IEP meeting. We cover a lot in this episode, from how to prioritize goals for your child, to making sure you’re in a position where you can adequately advocate for your kiddo. Join our conversation on FIEs, IEPs, and other interesting acronyms now!

Key Points From This Episode:


“The path to those accommodations is through an IEP and the IEP process is a process. So, your mileage will vary. It’s very customized to your child. And it’s very customized to what you want as goals.” — Mike [0:08:12]

“District websites have a link for special education. And within that link, they’re going to have all kinds of information.” — Heather [0:08:46]

“The more documentation you have, the better you can advocate for your child if need be, down the line.” — Heather [0:23:38]

“You don’t have to sign the IEP at that meeting, even if you just want to think about it for a week. Go ahead. It doesn’t have to be signed at that meeting. It’s not a requirement.” — Heather [0:28:45]

Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:

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