Top Ten Tips for a New School Year


*upated 2012*

1. Be patient, the start of a new school year is always a challenge until things settle down and order gets established.

2. If you have a child with challenges, try to meet with the teacher as soon as possible.

3. Inquire early in the school year about your child’s IEP – try and have it done before the end of October. Advocate that it been done asap. This is important because it sets the stage for the whole year.

4. Read the BCACL’s booklet on Inclusive Education it is well-written and informative. The E Book has great live links.

5.  Introduce yourself to the principal. In my experience, the principal sets the tone for the school. Do your best to get their support.

6. In advance of the school year, plan what you think your child needs and ensure that it is encapsulated within the IEP

7. Remember your child has a right to be in school. It is the law.

8. Get to know the organizational structure in your school system so you know who to go to if issues arise. Who does the principal report to? And who in turn do that person report to? and so on…

9. Share information with the teacher and EA that they will need to support your child. If you require a formal meeting ask for one.

10. Work on building relationships with people at the school, talk to other parents, and get support from an advocate if you need it.

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One Response to Top Ten Tips for a New School Year

  1. Carol Stinson says:

    The school district may ask that your child only attend part time in September and increase their hours at school as the year progresses.  This is often referred to as gradual entry.  Your child is entitled to be in school and to receive a minimum number of hours of instruction every year.  There are many reasons why the school might want a gradual entry for your child however it is up to the school to be prepared, not up to you or your child to give them time to sort out their lack of training or preparation. 

    Gradual entry should be included in your IEP review in the spring so that you can prepare child care or other needed supports in September, but in any case, make sure there is a definite time-line and goals for attendance the full day in an inclusive environment.

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