Must Schools Provide Meal Modifications for Students on Special Diets?

Federal laws and regulations require public schools to provide meal modifications through the cafeteria service, at no additional cost, to children whose disability restricts their diet. This includes children with autism who are on special diets due to food allergies, sensitivities, or sensory issues. In this article, we will discuss: How students with dietary restrictions […]

Behavior Issues at School: FBA, BIP, and Seclusion and Restraint

Students with autism may display challenging behaviors that interfere with their education or another student’s education. When this happens, schools should address behavior issues by conducting a Functional Behavior Assessment (FBA) to create a Behavior Intervention Plan (BIP). Doing so will help identify why the behavior is occurring and to address it appropriately. Furthermore, schools should make every effort to prevent the need for the use of seclusion and restraint.

How To Document Your Child’s Progress

Your child works hard every day at school, therapy, and home. However, progress can be hard to see on a day to day basis. Therefore, in this article, you will find suggestions on ways to document your child’s progress. Doing so will help you and your child’s team of professionals determine if an intervention is […]

IEP Transition Planning

One of the core objectives of IDEA is to prepare students for life after high school. Specifically, further education, employment, and independent living. IEP transition services fulfill this objective, and the law requires them to begin the year your child turns 16 years old. Transition is an exciting time when students become part of the […]

Independent Assessments

In order to develop effective goals with your child’s team, you need to know what their strengths and areas of need are. You can determine each by conducting assessments. Assessment is the formal process where professionals analyze data to measure knowledge and skills. While schools perform assessments on a regular basis, there may come a […]

Therapeutic and Communication Options for Speech Issues in Autism

Providing your child with an effective means to communicate their thoughts, opinions, experiences, feelings, and knowledge is essential to creating a meaningful life for them.  While it’s true that navigating speech issues in autism can be challenging, it is important to remember that challenging does NOT mean impossible.  Furthermore, you don’t have to navigate these […]

Inclusion

Inclusion is a philosophy based on the belief that ALL students belong to their school community. Inclusion gives all students–regardless of label–access to equal opportunities for meaningful participation. To clarify, access to meaningful participation is not limited to social interactions; it includes various curriculum options too. Furthermore, inclusion encompasses all areas of the school. It isn’t something […]

Special Education Conflict Resolution: Mediation and Due Process

There are times when parents may not be able to come to an agreement about what is needed for their child’s IEP with the school district. Because of this, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) provides the following options for special education conflict resolution: Mediation, Due Process, and Civil Action. Before we begin discussing […]

The Fundamentals of Special Education: What Parents Need to Know

In this article, Timothy A. Adams, Esq. discusses what parents need to know about the fundamentals of special education so they can better advocate for their children throughout the IEP process. Federal law defines special education as specifically designed instruction, at no cost to the parent, designed to meet the unique needs of a child […]

Special Education: IEP Tips

An Individualized Education Plan (IEP) is the foundation of your child’s education. Many parents feel overwhelmed and anxious about these meetings, but it doesn’t have to be this way. Below, you will find IEP tips to help you successfully navigate the Special Education process, including: Who is included on your child’s IEP Team Tips for […]

Managing Behavior at School: FBA and BIP

Imagine a child in math class, at a time when the students are expected to work independently. With a shout, the child sweeps papers, textbook, and pencils off the desk, drawing stares from peers and an immediate response from the teacher. A number of factors influence what happens after the child’s supplies end up on […]

Wonder Twin Powers UNITE for Autism

By Gabriella True – TACA Co-Coordinator Connecticut I have twin boys who will be 11 years old this summer and one of them has autism. Although Timmy was diagnosed with autism just prior to his third birthday, he’s been in therapy since the second day of his life. His twin brother, Xander, and the rest […]

Time for Action!

Before the diagnosis, we “knew” it was going to come. He was already enrolled in a school IEP program since February of that year. By May, we really started to suspect autism and already started to research everything we could while seeking an official diagnosis.

Shh…. The Secret to Successful IEP Meetings: Part 2 – at the Meeting

by Summer Stech, Esquire – TACA’s Legal Advocate The school year is well underway and winter break is around the corner. By now you may have already had an Individualized Education Program (IEP) meeting – or two or three – or maybe your child’s triennial or annual review is coming up in the spring. Either […]

Shh…. The Secret to Successful IEP Meetings: Part 1 – How to prepare

by Summer Stech, Esquire – TACA’s Legal Advocate The new school year is finally underway! Of course a new school year means it is time to start thinking about your child’s Individualized Education Program (IEP). Although many annual IEP’s are developed in the Spring – due to the prevalence of Spring birthdays, it is a […]