Month: December 2016

Need Help with ARD/IEP meetings?

Send me the e-booklet!

I’m excited to be sharing a e-booklet I’ve written to help parents use the power that IDEA grants them as a member of the ARD/IEP committee. 

This booklet is for you if you’ve ever been:

  • unable to get the school to send you paper or electronic copies of your child’s evaluations 72 hours BEFORE the ARD/IEP meeting so that you have enough chance to read and digest them
  • to an ARD/IEP meeting for “one little thing” that suddenly and surprising turned into a discussion you didn’t want
  • surprised to find unexpected people present you weren’t expecting
  • surprised to find people not present who you were expecting
  • unable to have the ARD/IEP committee address a concern that you’ve been bringing up

Send me the e-booklet!

OSERS is Listening–Do YOU have anything to say?

This week–Dec 12 – 16, OSERS (Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services) is in Texas in response to the Houston Chronicle series Denied.  This series details how TEA set a cap through the Performance Based Monitoring System on the percentage of students in Texas that school districts could serve.  If a school district provides more than 8.5% of its students with special ed services, then TEA lowers their performance level.

Listening sessions  will be held this week in only five Texas cities.  Click on the link to find out details for where and when.  People testifying will have 3 minutes to present their story.

In Houston, 100 people signed up to speak, and in Dallas 96 people signed up.  Both sessions ran over their 2 hour allotted time because parents and teachers were so passionate to share their stories about children being denied needed and federally mandated services.

Additionally, US Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee was in attendance for the entire Houston session, and she took notes on the names of specific schools where parents reported serious issues.  Rep. Jackson Lee has requested that people feel free to contact her in Washington if they have a story to share.  Also in attendance was Houston based Texas state Sen. Sylvia Garcia.

If a parent, teacher, or related service provider has more to say than can fit in three minutes, the a blog has been set up to allow stakeholders to say more.

Please share these links with all parents whose children receive special education services through either ECI or the public schools.

Please comment on the blog if you can’t be there in person.  Together we can make a difference.


Would you like to know more about how to speak up for your child?

YES!  Send me the expert tips!



Advocacy 101 for Super Busy Texans–the Basics of Speaking Up Effectively at the State and National Level

It’s December, and the 85th Texas legislature will be starting up next month.  This promises to be a very interesting session for people who have kids with disabilities.  Between Lt. Governor Patrick backing educational spending accounts, the 2017 version of vouchers, the redesign of day habilitation programs for adults with disabilities, and new attempts to whittle away at the freedom to decide how many vaccines your child will receive.  Opportunities to voice your opinion will abound in the next six months.

Advocacy groups often encourage us to e-mail or write letters, the staffers who work in the offices for senators and representatives tell me that phone calls are still the most effective way to express your opinion—way more effective than letters or email.

“Call my legislator??  I can’t do that!  I don’t know what to say and it takes too long!  I don’t even know who they are”  you say.

Follow the simple steps outlined below, and you will soon be a master advocate.  The turbulent times call for all of us to develop and hone this valuable skill.

Read More

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén