How Do Effective School-Family Relationships Relate to the IEP?

school family relationship

The development of an Individual Education Plan (IEP) is an essential process in the continuous progress of students with special education needs. It is important to involve, include and support families throughout this process in order to ensure that they understand it and are comfortable with the support provided by educators.

The IEP is also “an accountability tool for the student, the student’s parents, and everyone who has responsibilities under the plan for helping the student meet the stated goals and learning expectations as the student progresses through the Ontario curriculum.” (Ontario Ministry of Education, The Individual Education Plan (IEP): A Resource Guide, 2004, p. 7).

As the IEP is a living document that follows a student throughout their education and is continually updated, the process of developing and implementing the IEP will require ongoing communication between the school and the family.  A shared vision between the family and the school about the child’s challenges in the classroom is an important factor in a student’s uptake of interventions and strategies and their use at home.