Back to School Tip 6Who do you need to talk this school year that can influence your child’s education program?

Today’s tip is a simple one. All it takes is a a few minutes to do a brain dump. You will feel better when it is on paper and not floating around in your mind.  These little bits of information can create brain drain.

Depending on your child’s individual learning profile the number of people and specialties represented on your child’s education team will vary. All students will have at least one teacher, a resource teacher, and a principal on their team. That’s a given.

In Ontario all schools have an assigned special consultant who oversees each school and the special education plans put in place. They may attend some of the meetings for your child, particularly if there are decisions to be made around placement for your child. If your not in Ontario, familiarize yourself with the structure of your local education system and make some inquiries. The title may vary but the role will be similar to the one I mentioned.

Other team members could include professionals such as educational assistants, speech pathologists, occupational and physio therapists, behaviour therapists, special class/program teachers and social workers. There may be others.

Even if you think you already know your child’s team members I encourage you to write them down.  It really helps to put things into perspective when you see the full list of names in front of you.  Trust me on this. I also encourage you to look at the list and ask yourself is there someone who isn’t listed that should be listed?  If so this is perhaps what/who you want to inquire to your team about.

Once you have listed your child’s team members ask yourself this… do I know what role this person plays on the team? Do I know when they are the person I should be calling and what types of support they give my child? If the answer is no, then it’s time to do some research.

Take the time to write the names down of all of your child’s team members. Make a note on your calendar to touch base with each of these team members as the school year gets underway.