I affectionately call the IEP Parent Letter of Attachment “The Airing of Grievances.” It’s basically the, “I brought these things up, nothing changed, I want the record to state I’m not thrilled and that this isn’t over” document. Because you’re not going to die in every ditch. I’m going to die in the speech therapy ditch, but not the OT goal ditch. Especially when I think I’ll be able to rectify that at a later date. And, sad to say, I can’t fight for inclusion and speech therapy, so speech is going to win out. I intend on having him do full day kindergarten next year, and I’ll probably fight the inclusion fight then.
Anyways, here’s the “Airing of Grievances” I submitted today:
Parent Letter of Attachment
We, Ryan and Megan Stout, the parents of Paul Stout agree to this IEP, with the exception of the number of weekly minutes for speech services. We have arranged a second IEP meeting to further discuss this matter.
We would like to note the following:
- We are understanding of the fact that this is a busy season for IEP team members, but would prefer that no one leave the meeting early. In the future, we will request that a 2 hour block of time be set aside for Paul’s IEP meetings.
- We did not have time to go over the IEP notes because another group needed the meeting room. I would like to note this: in response to my request for more minutes of speech for Paul, I was told that because of the caseload of the speech therapist, and the fact that she is only at Emily Dickinson for 2 days a week, increased time was not possible. In the IEP notes, it is worded as follows: “**** explained the limitations of hours of services, available overall.”
- We do not feel our concerns with the sensory motor goal that measures bilateral coordination by rolling a ball, stringing beads on a shoelace, and pulling apart/pushing together pop beads have been adequately addressed. At home and in private occupational therapy, Paul can complete rolling a ball and pulling apart/pushing together pop beads; stringing beads is an emerging skill. He may have difficulty doing these things in a classroom setting due to distraction or boredom of the task. As the team at Emily Dickinson gets to know Paul, we may revisit this goal and replace these measurement tools with tasks that are more challenging to Paul and would help him be more functional in kindergarten.
- We believe that the regular education classroom would be the least restrictive environment for all the self-help/independence goals, as well as the social/emotional/behavioral goals. Goals in the area of speech/language and sensory motor could be met in the regular classroom with modifications and supports. We also believe Paul would benefit from peer modeling in behavior, attention, social engagement, communication and speech/language found in the regular ed classroom. We will be monitoring Paul’s progress and may seek to have him spend more time in the regular ed classroom.
- We would like to make the most of the time that Paul is in the regular ed classroom. Possible steps to take to that end include pairing with a student before learning a new task or transitioning to a different setting; facilitating socialization at snack, recess, lunch, and breaks; creation of a “circle of friends” group which rotates a few peers to “buddy” with him during classroom time, snack, and recess. We would also encourage the opportunity to educate peers on Down Syndrome and Autism, as well as some simple sign language that Paul (and others!) use.
- We plan to have Paul do a second year of kindergarten on a full day schedule.