Did Our IEP Come Too Late?


After struggling in school for many months, my daughter finally got an IEP. The accommodations improved her grades, but she was still recommended for retention by her teacher. I thought that a child with an IEP couldn’t be held back.


Unfortunately, having an IEP does not guarantee that a child can’t be retained.

The tragedy in your child’s case — and it happens all too often with special-needs kids — is the lag time between the school’s acknowledging your daughter’s need for an IEP and its instituting an agreed-upon course of action.

This is why it is important for parents to inform the school as soon as possible — and in writing — that they are seeking an evaluation and to request a meeting to discuss whether their child needs an IEP or a 504 Plan. Prompt action could have prevented your daughter from being retained.

Since Robert Tudisco was diagnosed with ADHD, he has researched and written extensively on the subject of special education law and disability advocacy, and now specializes in the area as a practicing attorney. He is a former Executive Director of the Edge Foundation, a nonprofit organization that provides specialized coaches for students with ADHD and Executive Functioning Impairment. He has served on the National Board of Directors of CHADD and is a former Vice President of ADDA. He is a frequent resource for the media, including CBS News, New York Times Magazine, Newsweek, ABC News, The BBC, The Today Show, CNN, USA Today, and The Seattle Times.
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