In Hamlet, by William Shakespeare, Ophelia says, "We know what we are, but not what we may be." This applies to all of us. I believe the best illustration of this statement is the caterpillar turning into a butterfly. As a member of a child's Individualized Education Plan (IEP) team, we must always remember this as we write an IEP. We must always remember the individual and work cooperatively to write an IEP that meets the unique needs of the child while preparing that individual for further education, employment, and independent living...whatever that may look like.
In my lifetime I've met many parents and caregivers who were overwhelmed by the IEP process, documents, and meetings. These parents have shared with me their feelings of confusion, frustration, and loneliness throughout the IEP process. I've also worked with teachers and administrators who felt lost, overwhelmed, and confused by all that special education involves.
My mission is to partner with parents, caregivers, and school districts in understanding Special Education, the IEP document and process, and to find common ground to enhance the education of children with special needs.
The ultimate goal is for you to feel comfortable in decision making and confident that the IEP is providing them a free appropriate public education (FAPE) that emphasizes special education and related services designed to meet their unique needs and prepare them for further education, employment, and independent living.
I am a certified special education teacher and have been a special educator for 30 years. I have attended several Wrightslaw conferences, completed the Master IEP Coach® Mentorship and am a member of the Master IEP Coach® Network. I've worked in the United States and England. During my career I developed my own behavior modification system that worked with all the students I worked with which was hundreds.
I am the author of Those Who "Can't..." Teach: True Stories of Special Needs Families to Promote Acceptance, Inclusion, and Empathy. The goal of this book is to tell the stories that needed to be told in a way that would change the reader's perspective of special education. Many teachers have told me they wished they would have this book sooner because it is changing they way they teach and respond to the student and their family.
I co-host Friday with Fran. A show on which we talk about all sorts of topics related to special education. I bring the perspective of an educator and coach, Fran brings the perspective of a parent and an individual with disabilities. This can also be found on Facebook or YouTube.