Help with upcoming IEP meeting

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-23-2004
Help with upcoming IEP meeting
Wed, 02-08-2012 - 10:47am
We've had an IEP for our 10-yr-old son for several years, he is in 4th grade this year and really struggling. We have issues with his meds right now, and so I'm fearful that because he has done better in the past they won't want to make changes. They want to normalize him as much as possible, and we do too, but how do you determine when to draw the line? He gets speech, although hasn't needed it too much, but she wants to continue with him for social skills, goes to the resource room at the end of the day for catching up (30 min), and can use the computer for any writing assignments (handwriting is terrible, has had OT in the past, but again since he is "capable" of good handwriting it was discontinued. Math is one of his hardest subjects, doesn't know the basic facts well enough to build on. What can we expect for help in this area. Funds are low of course, so not a lot of extra available. He forgets to bring some of his homework home at times. One thing I've noticed is math is his first subject and he wants to get that done before moving on, so when they move to a different subject and others are working on that, he goes back to math assignment to finish, thus getting behind on everything else. I've asked about modifications, but haven't had much response to that idea. He has been bringing home 2-4 subjects each night. Of course, hates homework. Last year he did really well getting up early enough in the morning and he would get right to it and finish it in no time. This year he just seems to sit and not do anything. Attention? Defiance? How do we know. Any ideas would be appreciated. Thanks, Lisa
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-02-2004
Mon, 02-20-2012 - 10:27pm
I know they will ask this with the IEP, but have you had his eyes checked? And was he checked for convergence issues? My son got the speech, OT and all because of fine muscle issues. Eyes are also fine muscles and if they are not strong enough it could be very hard for him to stay focused for a long period to keep things from appearing to float around.

With my son the convergence issues also effected him socially - he wouldn't look people in the face. He had to move to see one face, so he was moving all the time. The older the kids get, the smaller the font size gets and the harder it is for them to do the work because there are more letters and less white. He may like the math more in part because there is less on the page and is easier to follow. (If he does have this issue.)

The school will not pay for this. It cost me about $80 for the exam. Therapy we had covered under medical insurance, not vision insurance.

In general, I feel that kids want to please and will do the work if they can. Defiance is something that teachers bring out when they say the kid is lazy or such and the kid is actually working harder than the others who are getting better grades.
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-08-2004
Thu, 02-09-2012 - 4:17pm
What has he been diagnosed with? My son is dyslexic and also did OT for a weak fine motor skill that affected his handwriting. Like your son though they discontinued the OT b/c his handwriting had improved enough. He can type some assignments but mostly his handwriting is good if he just puts forth the effort. (my son is 11 and in 5th grade)
Does he have an assignment notebook? I know it helps my son some if he has written down his HW assignments in his notebook. Then he can look at it while he packs up for the day to come home and remember what he needs. He still forgets sometimes but not as much as he used to.
My son often goes back to assignments he has not completed and gets behind on other things too. I know it is frustrating. I am constantly telling him to do what the rest of the class is doing.
Is there a way you can get tutoring for him in math to strengthen those basic skills? Maybe one of the teachers at the school could tutor him?
I am sorry I don't have much constructive advice, I am dealing w/ a very non IEP friendly teacher this year and feel like i have been banging my head against the wall to get what I need for my son as well.


Avatar for jamblessedthree
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-23-2001
Wed, 02-08-2012 - 7:55pm
Every three years, students on IEPs can get tested/evaluated to assess where they are at in their learning, It helps in determing what progress they have made too.. Are you at that point? What intervention is already in place? He can still get services if he gets mainstreamed into the general ed classroom, Just a thought. Has the school psychologist evaluated his behaviors or defiance issues? Ask her/him to if not as he can apply a formal plan about that alone. Let the school know what your concerns are, Ask questions and don't be afraid to ask for a meeting with the team at anytime...

My daughter is in 7th grade now, she sounds a little like your son. I resisted some of the classroom modifications and changes to her schedule but I've loosened up a bit and I think things are looking up. Her initial struggles were in math too and school is able to break that subject into pieces without overwhelming her.

Finally, it took seven years to ask for it but we have ONE resource teacher we get information/updates from on a regular basis. My kid can be forgetful in bringing home assignments too and it's nice to have one contact name at school instead of scrambling and remembering which teacher and which class she is forgetting something in.....

Good luck, Keep your spirits up!