It is not enough merely to have an IEP in place for your special education child in the public school district. Instead, to ensure that your child does well and is in a learning environment where he can work to the best of his abilities, you must know what to look for in his daily, monthly and yearly progress. Here are some helpful hints that you can use to clue you in to a lack of progress in school for your special needs child.
Your Child Constantly Has the Same Goals
If the school district is keeping the goals on your child’s IEP the same year after year, this could show that your child is not making any progress or that the school district does not care enough to take the time to assess for new goals.
Your Child Never Demonstrates That He or She Is Meeting Goals
You may have the opposite problem. Your child’s IEP goals may change every year, yet you may not have any information that shows specifically that your child actually met the previous set of goals.
Vague, Non-Measurable Language in the IEP
Every goal on the IEP should be specific and measurable. Rather than saying that the student will make progress in an area, the IEP should state exactly what the child will be able to do by the end of the school year. Additionally, goals should be both short-term and long-term.
Poor Transition Planning
Transition planning should be a part of any high school experience for all special education students. Most of the time, this should be started by the time the student is 14 and should continue in increasing depth each following year. Transition planning should be used to guide the student towards college or a fulfilling adult life.
Continually failing test scores with no sign of progress indicates that the goals and resources for the student are not specific enough or are insufficient for where the student currently is.