Home > School and Learning > Learning Differences > Special Education > Special Education Laws > Special Ed Advocacy: Nine Rules of Thumb
|

Special Ed Advocacy: Nine Rules of Thumb

Because the stakes are so high, it is very difficult for parents of children with special educational needs to advocate calmly and objectively for the educational and related services their children need. Nevertheless, calmness, objectivity, and a third quality -- patience for the long haul -- are the parents' most important tools in a complex and often frustrating process. In the course of that process, here are a few rules of thumb I have found to be helpful to parents.

Rule One: Build a Reliable Team Around Your Child
The first step in building a reliable team is to find independent evaluators who can help you understand and advocate for your child. Other members of your support team may include a trained educational advocate who can help you understand the procedural steps and think through strategies as well as attend meetings and help you make your case. (As a general rule, an expert evaluator should not also be your advocate; the skills are different, and an evaluator is more credible if allowed simply to comment as an expert in your child's needs.)

Be sure to find an advocate who has the experience and judgment to help you work cooperatively and effectively with your school system rather than to enter with all guns blazing right from the start. It also is helpful to connect with parents of other children with similar disabilities in and out of your school district -- groups from whom you can receive both emotional and informational support as you advocate.

Next: Rule two >>
|


stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Twitter icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks

get ready for school!

We’ve got your
shopping list,
lunch menu,
and more.

GO

highlights

Join BIC on our mission to save handwriting and Fight For Your Write! Writing helps kids become better readers, boosts their confidence and sparks their creativity. Visit BICFightForYourWrite.com to sign our petition to save handwriting!

7 Tips for Reading Aloud to Babies & Toddlers
The AAP advises reading aloud to babies and toddlers because it boosts brain power and has many other benefits. Get some tips for making the most of story time with your tot!

Kindergarten Readiness App Wins Gold
Our Kindergarten Readiness app won the Gold Award of Excellence in the educational category at the 2014 Communicator Awards. This valuable checklist comes with games and activities to help your child practice the essential skills she needs for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

How to Survive Summer Boredom
When the kids are home all day, every day, summer boredom strikes hard and fast. Learn the best summer boredom busters and tips for surviving until September.

12 Birthday Party Favors that Won't Get Thrown Away
The next time you're planning a birthday, forgo the penny candy and cheap toys. Send your guests home with one of these fun and creative party favor ideas!