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The IEP is the written statement of an educational program for a student eligible for special education.
An IEP must be in effect before initiation of special education services. The IEP must be developed within 30 calendar days of the student’s initial determination of eligibility for special education. IEPs must be updated annually, or revised more frequently if needed to adjust the program and services.
Parent consent is required before the initial provision of special education services. If a parent refuses to consent to the provision of special education services, the district may not use mediation or due process to override a parent’s refusal. When the parents refuse to provide consent the IEP manager will notify that parent that the district does not have an obligation to provide the student with FAPE. The notification will be documented in the student’s file.
The district will maintain a copy of the current IEP which is accessible to all staff members responsible for providing education, other services, or implementing the IEP. All staff members will be informed of their responsibilities for its implementation. This includes not only teachers and other service providers, but also bus drivers, playground and lunchroom supervisors, nursing staff and others who may be responsible for the proper implementation. The building principal is responsible for ensuring that staff members are knowledgeable about their responsibilities.
IEPs will be implemented without undue delay following IEP meetings, regardless of the payment source for special education and or related services.
Parents are members of the IEP team and shall have the opportunity to fully participate. The district will make sure that the parents understand the proceedings, including arranging for an interpreter for parents who are deaf or whose native language is other than English. The district will also ensure that meeting locations are accessible. The special services department and IEP manager are responsible for coordinating interpreters and making arrangements for the meeting location.
The district will provide parents / guardians with a copy of the district's Required Notification of Isolation or Restraint of Students with IEPs or Section 504 Plans each time the Procedural Safeguards are given, as they are attached to the district's updated Procedural Safeguards.
The IEP team includes:
- The parents of the student;
- At least one general education teacher (or preschool teacher) of the student if the student is, or will be, participating in the general education environment;
- At least one special education teacher or special education provider of the student;
- A representative of the district, who is qualified to provide or supervise the provision of special education and related services, is knowledgeable about general education curriculum, and is knowledgeable about the availability of district resources;
- An individual who can interpret the instructional implications of the evaluation results;
- Any other individuals who have knowledge or special expertise about the student. These individuals may be invited by both the district and the parents, at the discretion of the person making the invitation, and the student, when appropriate or when required;
- Students must be invited when the purpose of the meeting includes discussion of transition needs or services;
- A representative of any other outside public and / or private agency is or may be responsible for payment or provision of transition services. Agency representatives will be invited only with the parent’s consent. If an agency representative can not attend the meeting, district personnel shall keep the representative informed of the meeting and obtain agency information that will assist in the service provision; and
- Existing team members may fill more than one of these roles if they meet the criteria for the role.
Parents will be notified of the participation of the Part C service coordinator or other designated representatives of the Part C system as specified by the state lead educational agency for Part C at the initial IEP meeting for a child previously served under Part C of IDEA.
The requirements for inviting parents to IEP meetings are found in the Parent Participation in Meetings section above.
The parents must consent in writing before an IEP Team member is excused from all or part of a meeting. If a team member’s area of the IEP is being discussed or modified, that team member must provide advance written input for their part of the IEP prior to the meeting.
If the parent attends the IEP meeting and agreement is not reached on the IEP, the team shall determine whether another IEP meeting should be scheduled as soon as mutually possible, or whether there is enough information to complete the IEP. When the decision is made that the IEP will be completed, the district must send prior written notice of the decisions reached to the parent, including the date the IEP will be implemented.
If the parents do not attend the IEP meeting, despite the district’s efforts to ensure participation, or if the team does not reach agreement, it is the district’s obligation to offer an appropriate educational program. The district will:
- Have IEP members present sign the IEP (or document participation if any member is unwilling to sign);
- Send a copy to the parent, and provide the parent prior written notice that the district intends to implement the IEP; and
- Forward the documentation of actual or attempted contacts to the special services department for processing when parents do not attend the meeting.
When making changes to an IEP after the annual IEP meeting for a school year, the parent and the district may agree not to convene an IEP meeting for the purpose of making changes. The parents and the IEP case manager may complete a written document indicating the changes and inform IEP team members and appropriate individuals of the changes. If the parents request a revised copy of the IEP with the amendments incorporated, the IEP manager will provide one.
*See the Special Education Terms & Definitions page for more information.