Individual Education Plan
What is an Individual Education Plan (IEP)
An IEP is a written plan. It is a working document which describes the strengths and needs of an individual exceptional pupil, the special education program and services established to meet that pupil’s needs, and how the program and services will be delivered.
It also describes the student’s progress. An IEP should be based on a thorough assessment of the student’s strengths, interests, and needs. It should identify specific goals and expectations for the student, and explain how the special
education program will help the student achieve the goals and expectations set out in the plan. The special education program and services the IEP describes should be modified as necessary by the results of continuous assessment and evaluation.
An IEP is:
i.a summary of the student’s strengths, interests, needs, and of the expectations for a student’s learning
ii.a written plan of action prepared for a student who requires modifications of the regular school program or accommodations;
iii. a tool to help teachers monitor and communicate the student’s growth;
iv.a plan developed, implemented, and monitored by school staff;
v.a flexible, working document that can be adjusted as necessary;
vi.an accountability tool for the student, his or her parents, and everyone who has responsibilities under the plan for helping the student meet his or her goals and expectations;
An IEP is not:
- a description of everything that will be taught to the student;
- an educational program or set of expectations for all students;
- a means to monitor the effectiveness of teachers; or
- a daily plan.
Important information to be Included in an IEP
- Summary of student’s strengths and needs
- Relevant medical/health information
- Relevant formal assessment data
- Student’s current level of educational achievement in each area
- Goals and specific expectations for the student
- Accommodations required (supports or services that will help the student access the curriculum and demonstrate learning)
- Special education and related services provided to the student
- Assessment strategies for reviewing the student’s achievements and progress
- Regular updates, showing dates, results, and recommendations
- Transition plan (if required)
The IEP process involves the following five phases:
1. Gather information
2. Set the direction
3. Develop the IEP
4. Implement the IEP
5. Review and update the IEP
It should be noted that IEP process is continuous, involving ongoing review, evaluation, and adjustments.
1. Gather information
- Review the student’s records ( like student’s academic achievements, attendance, school behaviour, communication skills, likes, dislikes, talents, problem-solving skills, social skills etc.
- Consult with the student, parents, school staff, and other professionals (like counselors, social workers, resource teachers etc)
- Observe the student (how the student approaches new tasks;; interacts with others; organizes himself or herself, and materials; uses language; performs individually and in group activities etc.).
- Review the student’s current work
- Conduct further assessments, if necessary
- Consolidate and record information
2. Setting the Direction
- Establish a collaborative approach (including the student and parents). The membership of an IEP team can and should vary according to the needs of the individual student.
- Establish roles and responsibilities to team members (class teacher, special education teacher, parents, the student etc
3. Developing an IEP
Identify and record the student’s strengths and needs
Identify goals and expectations
Determine strategies and resources
Develop a transition plan ( Some Special Need education pupils may experience difficulty making transitions from one grade level to another, from one school or school to another, therefore a detailed and coordinated transition plan, implemented well before the anticipated move, will help prepare these students and assist them in making a smoother transition.
Establish a monitoring cycle : All those involved in providing programming for the student have an important role to play in reflecting on the student’s achievement and the appropriateness of the modifications, accommodations, strategies, and resources being used.
4. Implement the IEP
- Share the IEP with the student, parents, school staff, and other professionals (providing a copy to parents)
- Put the IEP into practice i.e. translate the IEP into daily plans for learning, considering the student’s individual interests, strengths, needs, and achievement levels.
- Continuously evaluate the student’s progress
- Adjust goals, expectations, and strategies as necessary
5. Review and update an IEP
- Update the IEP periodically (at least once per reporting period)
- Review and update the IEP at year end and when the student transfers to another school
- Store and keep the IEP Student Records