What is an IEP?

I.E.P. stands for “Individual”, “Education”, “Plan”. It is a legal document that is developed by the parents and their school district that outlines the student’s learning needs. It describes the services and support the school district will provide to the student. The parent is also part of the IEP process and works collaboratively with the district to develop an individualized program for their child.

An IEP describes the services and support your child will need in the classroom. It includes the accommodations and modifications that will support your child’s and progress. These “accommodations” and “modifications”are determined by the teacher based on each student’s needs. Accommodations do not change the program not its content. They only support students’ learning. “Modifications”, on the other hand, reflect changes to the curriculum or content, to adjust teaching to each students’ individual learning needs in line with the student’s abilities.

IEP meetings can be intimidating for first time parents. Your first IEP is very important. It is recommended that you come to the meeting well prepared with questions based on what your child’s struggles, his or her social challenges, on their communication style, what your hopes are for their future, etc.