Twelve monthly gifts can have twelve times the impact of one gift! Our staff is providing support, training, and information services daily to Arizona families. Help... Keep Reading
FIEP for FAPE. What’s That?
Posted Sep 17, 2014
The Dispute Resolution Unit at the Arizona Department of Education (ADE) will be doing some travelling this fall. Early Dispute Resolution Specialists Amy Dill and Jeff Studer will be providing facilitated individualized education program (IEP) trainings at seven school districts in an effort to improve outcomes for IEP teams and the students they serve.
IEP facilitation is a student-focused process in which a trained individual (facilitator) assists the IEP team to develop an IEP that provides a free appropriate public education (FAPE) to the student.
The two-day trainings will incorporate three components needed to facilitate a successful IEP meeting: standardized meeting practices, knowledge of the IEP process, and the use of meeting management skills that aid in minimizing conflict and maximizing collaboration.
Dill stated, “Through my experience as a complaint investigator for ADE, and more personally, as the parent of a teen with autism, I know how easy it can be for a parent to feel as though they have not been heard at an IEP meeting.” She continued, “I’m convinced that many of the disputes I have assisted with have been caused by the team’s inability to effectively communicate with one another.”
Using their past experience Studer, whose background is in behavioral health, and Dill include techniques for schools to involve parents in the IEP process and to recognize opportunities for providing them with additional resources and training.
Similar to the state’s current Mediation System, facilitated IEPs will be available via parent or school request by the 2015-2016 school year.
Although the trainings are scheduled outside of Maricopa County, spring may bring trainings to the state’s most populous county. School personnel can register to attend any of the currently scheduled trainings by contacting the Arizona Department of Education Dispute Resolution Unit at (855) 383-9801.