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IEP (Individualized Education Plan) Overview

Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
Federal law — the reauthorized Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) of 2004 — defines the rules and regulations for creating an Individual Education Program (IEP) when a special education evaluation reveals areas of student need. The Individual with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) guarantees the right of all children with disabilities (ages 3-21) to a free, appropriate education. 

The Committee for Special Education (CSE) is the Individualized Education Plan (IEP) Development Team
The CSE team works together to create Specially Designed Instruction (SDI) and goals for the student. The Initial IEP is done before an initial placement in special education. The IEP is reviewed every year to measure the student's progress and must be completed by the anniversary date. An IEP amendment can be done anytime a change in the program is needed. IEP Progress Reports are completed in concert with grading periods. For example, at the end of the trimester for elementary students. 

A reevaluation is completed by the three year anniversary date of the initial evaluation, and every three years following. Off-cycle evaluations can be proposed by a parent or the school in one or all areas of service, at any time prior to the scheduled 3 year evaluation.

An IEP team consists of:

  • Student at age 16 when transition services are addressed
  • Parent(s)/Caregiver(s)
  • Special education teacher(s)
  • General education teacher(s)—if student participates in regular education environment
  • Representative of local educational agency (Assistant Director of Special Education)
  • Individual who can interpret instructional implications of evaluation results
  • The team may also include a counselor, therapists, behavior specialist and the student, prior to age 16, as appropriate