Yes, and no. They need to be kept in the loop of everything going on. Call around to other advocacy groups such as the Arc. Do an internet search. A good IEP advocate will admit when they don’t know something and will either refer you to someone who does, search for that information. Same previous potential client: We really need your help! “Become an IEP/Special Education Advocate!” the flyer said. We were looking at a brochure that my son’s school had sent home to parents. My main goal is teach you how to become a better, more effective advocate for your child. What if they would have come to the table with the suggestion that they want to move his placement or remove some services? By working with children and getting feedback from parents and professionals, we identify system-wide barriers and advocate for new laws while working to enforce existing laws. Ask, if that is what you need. Ideally, they also know policies and procedures used in your school district (or where to find them). Some have a good working knowledge of things like the juvenile justice system, since it disproportionately involves our kids. But training is available, so I personally would shy away from an advocate who says “well, I’m all self-taught because there just are never trainings in our area.” Sure, easy for me to say that from metro Philly. A: A student advocate is a member of a school faculty who works with troubled students or those who have problems in their education. Most of us just kind of fell into this job or evolved into it. A good special education advocate can explain the laws and policies to you in a way you can understand. ‘Name’ has now been arrested/suspended/302’d. I also will help you identify ways for your child to become more independent and able to advocate for him or herself. An IEP Advocate is a person who has tremendous knowledge of both IEPs and the special education community around you. My goal is for you to not need my services again. Special ed training is like that, but too new. And now the rug has been ripped out from underneath you and your head is swirling and you are struggling to get concise, meaningful thoughts out. But, moms helping moms has been around forever. IEP/Special Education Advocacy | Helping You Be a Better Advocate for your Child. What is an IRLP? An IEP advocate should be familiar with different kinds of IEP assessments and reports and explain them to you, or where to find that information (since there are 1000s of different evals). Are there any districts that they won’t work in, and why? But, advocates know the IEP process better than parents. It was a 12-week course on how to become a Special Education Advocate. I’ve been really pleasantly surprised by some out of the box thinking and ideas in IEP meetings from people just joining the team. You collaborate with teachers and guidance counselors on behalf of students and answer to the school’s principal. First, if you have no desire to become an IEP/Special Education Advocate, you just want to hire one. How to Become a Special Education IEP Advocate | Salary | Certification, Don’t IEP Alone | IEP Organizers and Binders for Parents, The Intersection of Race and Disabilities, {Holiday Ads 2020} Black Friday | Cyber Monday | Toy Books, How to Become a Special Education Advocate or IEP Parent Advocat, How to Find and Hire a Special Education Advocate, What to do if you cannot Afford an IEP Advocate or Special Education Attorney. For you folks with high-functioning kiddos, what if at the meeting they stated that they believe that your child no longer needs/qualifies for an IEP, so let’s move him to a 504. If it’s dyslexia, look up decoding dyslexia. Because no one should have to IEP alone. And, will understand the special education “climate” in your area, as well as private placement options, independent evaluators and more. And, know good IEE evaluators in your region. In Pennsylvania, we have these things called Task Forces which can be a great place to start because they are parent-led. After hearing your story, what is their strategy or plan for you? You can become a lifeguard by the American Red Cross, YMCA, Boy Scouts of America, Ellis and Associates and many other options. A special education advocate can help parents write appropriate IEP/IFSP goals and objectives and suggest appropriate supports and accommodations. How long do they expect this to take before it is likely resolved? Advocates can and should do a thorough record review, including evaluations and testing, Individualized Education Programs (IEPs), and progress reports. So now, ask yourself, what are some of the reasons you think that you don’t need an advocate? A special education advocate can review important documents, such as the IEP/IFSP or PWN before you sign them. MAC is here with resources to help: Maybe that “not” will be erected at this meeting. A special education advocate should know about services and supports which may be helpful for your child and what is available in your geographic area. Know your parental rights and tip the scales. “Ok, great, I found a few….how do I know if they’re good? Ask questions and go with your gut. Including but not limited to: Medicaid or medical assistance, respite services, wraparound behavioral health and more. What is their success rate, and how do they define success? Groups like Decoding Dyslexia and others host workshops and trainings, availability varies by state. It is still kinda the wild west out there. “$2000?!? What is their history with your school district? I have done a whole separate post on this, please look here: How Much Does a Special Education Advocate cost?

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