| I was recently doing a workshop for a group of educational
assistants...it was a rather in-depth, intense workshop where we examined
the characteristics of needs statements, and then followed up with “walking
through” the entire process of developing the Individual Education Plan
for a real student presented by the EA. Obviously, for many of the
participants, this was the very student they worked with on a day-to-day
basis... they had a lot invested in the exercise!! During the process we
constantly referred to “buzz words” such as clear, concise, measurable,
evidential, and individual to help us identify good needs statements and
strategies. In fact, these words brought a knowing smile to our lips
as we visited and revisited them throughout the day!
About ten minutes from the end of our long, exhausting, intense time, I made a “fatal” pedagogical error... I asked a summative question!! ( Who can tell me when you know you have a good IEP?). Honestly, I expected to hear back our “buzz words”. An experienced Educational Assistant, smiled and said, “I know.” The answer that was forthcoming was so unexpected and profound, that it was 45 minutes of spirited discussion before we left.
She said, “ That’s easy......if it is a good
IEP it will be on the desk, wrinkled and
If you reflect on this statement you will get a picture
of the process and its flaws.
So, is your IEP worthy of a “Tim Horton” ring??
Is it on the desk or in a file? Is it a
Over the past year, the Ministry of Education
has strengthened the requirements for
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