Rochelle’s Special Education Tips
Even the Notes are Under the Microscope
IEP teams sometimes receive communications from parents and/or their attorneys and advocates who differ with the contents of Meeting Notes or Minutes. They want to pick them apart and substitute their thoughts, even how they “felt” about what was said. You have to decide on a case-by-case basis whether to respond, point by point or to write a summary-style response. In general, recommendations for dealing with this problem are these:
- Start by saying at the beginning of the Notes, “These Notes are a summary of the IEP team meeting, not a verbatim transcript.”
- If the letter to the team is innocuous and just generally complaining about things, you can respond by stating, “Your letter will be placed in the IEP file.”
- You may respond to each requested change or addition.
- If you agree with the changes, you should change the Notes.
- If the parent insists that you change the Notes and you have reason not to, such as when the parents’ changes are inaccurate, you must advise the parents of their right to appeal your decision to the Superintendent.
- If the requested changes are not too voluminous, you can discuss them at the next IEP team meeting, if one is scheduled. You should not wait until the following year to discuss the changes. Your discussion, of course, would go into the next Notes, which would start the ball rolling again!
Rochelle’s Special Education Tips (“Tips”) are designed to be helpful and thought provoking, but should not be considered legal advice as they may not be accurate for use in all situations. Tips are based on my opinions and positions in accordance with federal and Maryland law and my over 35 years of experience in the special education legal field. – Rochelle S. Eisenberg, Esquire
Copyright © 2020 Pessin Katz Law, P.A. All rights reserved.
Tips may be reproduced for distribution within the educational institution, the individual school or school system and is for use by their staff. Additional distribution must be approved by author.
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