Review the “FIEP: A Facilitated IEP Meeting” video from this week’s readings. In a 500-750 word summary, address the following:
Identify IEP team members, by title, who are:
Mandated to be present under IDEA;
Under the IDEA mandated rights of 2004, the following members need to be present in an IEP meeting;
Mrs. Johnson. She is Amy’s mother. She has all the valuable knowledge about her child’s strengths, struggles, and goals and can describe what is not working. Additionally, Mrs. Johnson has the final say. She has to be consulted and fall in the range of consensus for a final decision to be made about Amy’s educational and behavioral progress.
Mrs. Williams. The general education teacher. Miss Williams is aware of Amy’s classroom behavior and performance in her general education curriculum.
Mr. Smith-Amy’s special education teacher. Mr. Smith offers input on what Amy needs to perform better in the general education classroom including how to modify instructions or accommodation to Amy’s needs.
Miss Brown. She is the behavior specialist.
Are optional under IDEA.
In our situation, Amy is not a mandatory member to this meeting.
Mr. Hill may be an optional facilitator.
Mr. Hill is an IEP facilitator who is a voluntary early dispute resolution option available to parents of children with disabilities and school districts/agencies for the purpose of;
Building and improving relationships among IEP team members.
Keeps the meeting focused on the main agenda.
Modelling effective communication and listening.
Providing opportunities for team members to resolve conflicts as they arise. Most IEP meetings do not need the services of an IEP facilitator. Generally, an IEP facilitator is requested when parents and school personnel are experiencing difficulties communicating and reaching agreement about a student’s needs. IEP facilitation may be used for an IEP team meeting, including the initial, annual, or re-evaluation process.
Describe the required sections of an IEP, explaining what each section addresses and how it relates to the education of the individual with exceptionalities.
Opening of the meeting
Introduction is done by the facilitator
To facilitate is to make it easier for people to understand each other, build agreement and take deliberate actions.
The facilitator is a trained person who intervenes to help a group, identifies, discusses and solves problems and later makes the decision.
Mr. Hill’s (the facilitator) opening statements are important since it clarifies expectations, and sets a proper tone which invites communication.
He welcomes them and explains that it is an IEP meeting and asks each member to clarify their roles.
He ensures that members are on time and informed of purpose.
Identifies the goal of the meeting and develop an agenda. Agenda is adjusted to address the specific purpose of the meeting. Agenda is personalized to the extent needed. Agenda is posted and visible to all.
Ground rules, behavior/discussion guidelines are used.
The Discussion Guidelines
Mr. Hill explains the discussion guidelines which include;
Members are to speak one at a time,
Members are to treat everyone respectfully, listen to all opinions without interruptions even if one disagrees with others opinions among others.
The facilitator may ask open questions, closed question, leading question or why question depending on the level of desired response.
Mr. Hill, the principal and playing the role of a facilitator asks questions to Mrs. Johnson to expound on her visit to Amy’s doctor which Mrs. Johnson explains that she was alarmed by Amy’s unusual behavior.
Mr. Hill asks Miss Williams to describe Amy’s academic performance which she explains that her behavior can be very challenging when she is not able to focus specifically individual focus.
Summary and Reframing
In this section, Mr. Hill may opt various methods of summarization which include
Repeating the exact words spoken by Amy’s mother,
Opting to use a neutral summary to reframe what has been said to help others see the situation in a different perspective.
The facilitator also acknowledges emotions using;
Less intense language
This section is crucial since it involves finding options to help Amy stay on task during individual work, completing assignments and interacting appropriately with others.
Decision Making Process
The decision on the course to take towards enabling Amy to overcome her weaknesses arrives through consensus.
Here, the decision makers can support the idea with enthusiasm or with reservations. However, all members involved must be within the range of consensus.
Mrs. Johnson is not in consensus at first. She later falls within the range when the other members opt for using the E-reader method, taking data and for a specified period.
Closing the Meeting
This occurs when the main agenda is discussed and an agreement is arrived at.
Before the adjournment, evaluation forms are provided which are filled before leaving for feedback.
In 250-300 words, reflect upon the “FIEP: A Facilitated IEP Meeting” video, sharing observations in relation to the aforementioned sections “Interactions, Participation, & Communication” and the “Method of Decision Making” sections of the IEP checklist document.
“Interactions, Participation, & Communication”
In the interaction process, deliberate efforts are made to ensure parents are welcomed and feel included. This is the right place where Mr. Hill clarifies the goals and expectations. Each member is given an opportunity to clarify their roles. Participation is observed when the
members who play different roles, for instance, Mrs. Williams, the General Education teacher, explains her observations on Amy and so are the rest of the members. Communication plays an active role in this scenario. This is because if there lack efforts of proper communication, then the whole IEP process is likely not to succeed. It is through proper interaction, participation, and communication that all other members understand Mrs. Johnson’s complaint about opting to have an adult who watches over her all round the clock and assist her in finding a better way of ensuring that Amy understands that she should always responsible for her actions.
What are some of the items from the checklist in the two identified sections that you saw in the video’s mock IEP meeting?
Method for Decision-Making, and the method used to reach a consensus and the consensus language. It can be a challenging time since the mother assumes to know Amy better than anyone else while at the same time the teachers feel they know Amy better. In such a situation. This may call for opting numerous options which might not bring an amicable solution. I tend to believe that it is not all times that the set goal is achieved.
What skills from the checklist do you think might be difficult for you to perform?
The skill of facilitating the meeting. The influence to use gestures to convey my meaning. Additionally the nature in which as a human being I may be tempted to make resolutions based on prejudices and biases.
The skill of decision-making and being committed to the decision made and follow-up activities.
What could you do to help develop those skills that might be difficult for you?
During the process of facilitating the meeting, I would focus on first having all resources such as visuals such as tags and charts. I would also practice and research on roles of a facilitator and on the topic at hand before the meeting. Additionally, I would learn to master courage so that even when communicating to the members, they all fill the sense of leadership which builds trust on me and also to them that I will help deliver the most suitable solution. Additionally, I would train myself to focus and is committed to observing the rule of “first things first” that is, prioritizing important issues and working on improving them.