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As we enter the second half of the school year, many families will be preparing for Annual (IEP/504) or Triennial Reviews (IEP), or Initial Eligibility Process (IEP/504). Here are some of my Tips for Virtual IEP and 504 Meetings: 


  • Ask to see results of any testing/observations prior to the meeting. 

  • In advance of the meeting, you may request specific staff members to be a part of the 504 or IEP team. 

  • Ask for documents being discussed to be projected on the screen. Ask for updates to be made in real time, so that important agreements are not forgotten after the meeting. 

  • Practice the mute/unmute feature prior to the meeting. 

  • Write down your thoughts before the meeting. Meetings can be emotional, and it’s easy to forget to address important points.

  • If you have an advocate, you won’t be able to turn and talk during the meeting, so set up an alternative way to communicate during the meeting, via private text or chat feature. 

  • Many virtual meeting platforms have a “record” feature, which you can request the team use, should you wish. 

  • Make sure the right players are present. All professionals who performed assessments should be present to present their findings. 

  • Ask questions in the chat box, or by interjecting in the meeting. Ask team members to explain special education terminology and acronyms.

  • Offer suggestions! You have a unique knowledge of your child. This knowledge will help the team build effective supports.

  • Bring outside support when needed. Bringing a knowledgeable advocate to a meeting is a way to ensure that correct protocol is followed and to keep meetings non-adversarial, and student centered. 

  • To the extent possible, involve your child in the planning! 

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