If you have recently learned that your child has a developmental delay or a disability (which may or may not be completely defined), this message may be for you. It is written from the personal perspective of a parent who has shared this experience and all that goes with it.
1. ATTITUDE AND EMOTIONS Don’t yell. Drop your voice when you feel anger. If the other party seems to be acting in good faith, respond in-kind. Focus on how to get your partner(s) to do what you think they need to do. Never threaten anything you are not fully prepared to carry out successfully. Imagine yourself as the advocate for someone else’s child. […]
Not all kids work at the same pace. As an educator, I’ve seen many kids with slow processing speed who are smart, but who struggle to keep up with the pace in the classroom. When these kids are at school, they are (or should be) given accommodations like extra time or pre-made notes to help them navigate their school day successfully. With all the pressures of parenting, however, it’s a different story at home. Parents often want kids to hurry up and finish their homework or chores so they can move on to the next activity on the to-do list. That’s [...]
IDEA and other federal laws protect the confidentiality of your child’s education records. These safeguards address the following three aspects: the use of personally identifiable information; who may have access to your child’s records; and the rights of parents to inspect their child’s education records and request that these be amended to correct information that is misleading or inaccurate, or that violates the child’s privacy or other rights. […]
One of parents’ most important rights is the right to give (or not give) their consent for certain actions of the school system with respect to their child with a disability. When the term consent is used in IDEA, or the term parental consent, it has the same meaning as the term informed written consent. It means that the parent has been fully informed regarding the action of the school system for which parental consent is being requested. […]
The following is a collection of effective communication skills that can be used to encourage solution oriented conversations. 1. Know who and how to contact the right person to address your concerns. Identify your concerns and the outcomes you would like to see. “We really need to focus on…” Focus positively on the issue at hand and strive not to allow negativity to take control. “I’m sure we’ll find a good solution to…” Talk to the person closest to your child first, for example, your child’s teacher. […]