McPherson Unified School District 418

Skip to main content

Connect With Us

Special Education » Information for Families

Information for Families

Kansas Special Education Process Handbook
Medicaid Information

Parent Tips for Successful IEP Meetings

  1. Before the meeting
    1. Consider bringing a trusted person with you - spouse, partner, relative, neighbor, friend.
    2. Build a positive relationship with at least one person on the IEP team before the meeting.
    3. Plan ahead and put your thoughts and questions down on paper so you won't forget to mention what's important to you.
    4. Jot down a list of strengths, challenges, preferences, and what you think your son or daughter needs to succeed in school.
    5. Ask your child what is going well and what areas they would like to focus upon.
  2. During the meeting
    1. There will be a discussion and review of the student’s present level of performance including data to support this decision
    2. Ask questions and seek clarification.
    3. Share your ideas about goals, services, and participation in school activities.
    4. Involve your child in the IEP meeting. When your students is 18, they will be the adult making decisions about his/her own placement, so it’s never too early to include the child in the process.
  3. After the meeting
    1. Review the documents discussed at the meeting. Immediately contact the primary provider, school psychologist, or principal with questions or concerns.
    2. Create a file to keep all special education paperwork so you have it as a resource.
    3. Request another meeting if you have concerns about your child’s program, progress, or services.
    4. Continue building the relationship with school personnel.

Family Rights at a Glance


 Families have a right to:

  • A full evaluation of your child’s needs. If you don’t agree with what the evaluation team determines, you can obtain an independent evaluation.
  • Receive 10-day prior written notice of Individual Education Plan (IEP) meetings.
  • Participate in IEP meetings and help develop your child’s IEP.


  • Invite to IEP meetings others with knowledge or specific expertise about your child. For example, this person could be another parent, a teacher, a family member, or a friend.


  • Give and revoke consent for identification, initiation, and significant change of services.


  • Receive notice about minor changes in services or placement.


  • Be informed of your child’s progress.


  • Examine your child’s records and consent to release of those records.


  • Privacy of information. 
  • Pursue due process in order to protect procedural safeguards.
  • Access the full document of Parent Rights below



Common Acronyms and Abbreviations


Here are some common acronyms and abbreviations that may be used in conversations or paperwork.


504         Civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals

ADHD   Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

APE       Adapted Physical Education

BIP         Behavior Intervention Plan

CBM      Curriculum Based Measurement; Measures the rate at which a child can correctly complete basic skills.

COTA    Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant

DD         Developmental Disability

ED          Emotional Disturbance

ESY       Extended School Year

FBA       Functional Behavior Assessment

GEI        General Education Intervention

IDEA     Individuals with Disabilities Education Act

IEP         Individual Education Program

LD          Learning Disability

LEA       Local Education Agency

LRE        Least Restrictive Environment

OCR       Office for Civil Rights

ODD      Oppositional Defiant Disorder

OHI        Other Health Impaired

OI           Orthopedic Impairment

OT          Occupational Therapy

PAWS    Personal Awareness With Supports

PBS        Positive Behavior Support

PLAAFP Present Levels of Academic Achievement and Functional Performance

PT          Physical Therapist

SLP        Speech Language Pathologist

VI           Visual Impairment

VR         Vocational Rehabilitation

   McCSEC Screening Schedule