Individualized Education Programs – What are they & What are the benefits?

If your child has any special learning needs, you might hear the term IEP a lot. Understanding the concept and process of an IEP will help you maximise the impact on your child’s progress. Our Specialist Sharanya M gives us an introduction to understadning IEPs.

What is an IEP?

Special education services in the form of an Individualised Education Programme (IEP) may be available to students who require more assistance and support in school  This programme describes the goals and any support services that a child may require in order to succeed in school. An Individual Education Plan (IEP) is a written document that is prepared by the school in collaboration with the child’s family to design an academic program that suits the needs of the student. 

Every effort is made to ensure that children with any kind of disability study alongside their classmates who are neurotypical. But when the degree of assistance required in a normal classroom cannot be fulfilled, the child is educated in a customised learning classroom that is more suited for their requirements. Because there are fewer students per teacher in these sessions, more one-on-one education is possible. The teacher is generally trained to assist students with different educational needs. Students spend most of their day in a small group and participate in normal classes whenever feasible.

What does the procedure look like?

After an initial assessment involving different specialists like special educators, speech and language therapists, vision and hearing specialists and psychologists, the next step to creating an Individualized Education Program is a meeting between the team of specialists and the parents or caregivers of the child.  In this meeting, decisions regarding what is to be included in the specialized program are discussed. A regular teacher will also be present at this meeting to provide suggestions on how the plan can help your child progress through the standard education curriculum. The team will review your child's educational requirements and will set precise, quantifiable short-term and yearly objectives for each of those needs during the meeting. As a parent, you will be able to play an active part in defining the goals and deciding which abilities or areas should be considered with equal importance. IEP plans are reviewed annually to update goals and make sure your child is getting the support they need.

What are the benefits of an Individualized Education Program?

Individualized student care 

This is the biggest advantage of an IEP. One of the numerous problems with traditional education is that teachers are frequently overworked and unable to devote adequate time to each student. Individualized education plans (IEPs) make one-on-one interaction between students and teachers a daily reality. 

Modified learning methods

Children with any kind of learning difficulty are typically as capable of academic accomplishment as their classmates, but the only difference is that they do not learn in the same way. With an IEP, these students have the option of receiving an education curriculum that is personalised to their specific needs. IEPs also have the advantage of being high-quality and are implemented by skilled experts. Students with IEPs will be able to rely on teachers who are sensitive to their unique needs and are also committed to their achievement. 

 Clear structure to learning

The clear structure and action plan of an IEP provide a great opportunity for educational advancement. The IEP acts as a guide to help parents and students know what to expect from their program each day, how they are going to be taught, and what milestones they should be reaching.

Regular monitoring

The IEP equips teachers to understand when students are excelling or falling behind, or when adjustments are needed. Parents can also clearly understand where their child is succeeding or struggling and students are empowered to take control of their own education. Each of these processes helps the student to advance steadily. 

Improves academic progress

The clear framework and action items of an IEP also provide the best chance for educational success. Teachers are trained to recognise when the students are succeeding or struggling, as well as when adjustments are required. Parents can be up to date about their child’s educational status and advancements in a way, and students take charge of their own education resulting them in being more empowered. Each of these components aids the student in making steady progress.  

 

All children have the ability to learn. We only to understand how they learn to help them learn. An IEP can change the course of learning for your child with clear, individualised instruction, modified learning methods and personalised goals and skills. It might seem complex but with the right guidance, it can help your child overcome their learning challenges. If you would like to understand more about an IEP, reach out to our specialists at Tactopus. 

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