At the beginning of the school year, one of our readers was concerned that the school wasn’t providing Occupational Therapy for her daughter as was written into her IEP. They asked the teacher about it, and discovered the problem – the district hadn’t hired a OT for the school. The school was every bit as concerned about it as the parents.
Tugging on Superman’s Cape. So at the fall IEP meeting, the parents used their legal leverage as parents to bring pressure onto the representatives from the central office to make the hire. “You do realize that this is in the IEP. It is legally mandated that Sally have this therapy. It’s not an option.”
Up, Up, and Away! Although no threat was made, the phrase ‘legally mandated’ meant that the battle was already won. The school district knew that it truly had no choice but to provide the OT that was needed. And…the Occupational Therapist was indeed hired – a huge win for all the children involved as well as the school.
My Hero. An additional win was that the parent/school alliance was strengthened. The parents did the nagging; they were the bad guy. This was one less thing that the school had to fight central office for. They were grateful that someone else fought this battle for them.
As the parents and the school worked as a team – as allies – to get what was needed for the child, it set the stage for better in-school teamwork later on.
Makes for a good movie plot, too – don’t you think?