If your child has a literacy-related learning disability like dyslexia, here are some tips to create effective IEP goals and supports.
When you set up the meeting:
- Make sure there is a reading specialist in the IEP meeting. Ideally this would be one of the people who did the evaluation.
- Ask about this when you first schedule the IEP meeting. There should be someone in the district who can play this role.
When you're in the meeting:
- Ask for specifics about your child’s reading disability. What components do they struggle with? How will that affect other components, like comprehension or writing?
- Make sure the goals address all the components.
- Ask what instructional (teaching) methods they suggest. For example, the Orton Gillingham method is a proven teaching strategy for kids with dyslexia. Louisiana policy does not specify a specific method, but does specify that it should be “multisensory”. This means it includes different senses: seeing text, hearing sounds, and physically moving cards or blocks into the right order.
- Ask if there is research to show these methods work. (“Is this an evidence-based intervention?” “Is it data-driven?" “Is it a multisensory approach?”)
- Make sure the goals are specific, clear and measurable.
- Look at examples of IEP goals. Read this web page from Learning Abled Kids: IEP Goals for Reading Fluency and Decoding with IEP Examples.
- The IEP is not only about reading skills. Ask if your child needs any other kind of support. They may need help with fine motor coordination that affects writing. Or they may have social or emotional needs to help them be confident and happy in the school setting.
See the next page for a list of specific questions to ask!
Learn more about setting up an IEP
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