In This Issue
LIU  Post
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LIU Brentwood
101 Crooked Hill Road
Brentwood, NY 11717
LIU  Riverhead 
121 Speonk-Riverhead Rd
LIU Building
Riverhead, NY 11901

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Video Corner

A link to two videos on the CADRE website about proper communication.

FIEP Training - What is IEP Facilitation and its Purpose

FIEP Training: Encouraging Others to Listen as Allies
FIEP Training: Encouraging Others to Listen as Allies

FIEP Training: Reconciling Differences: Issues, Positions and Interests
FIEP Training: Reconciling Differences: Issues, Positions and Interests

Autism is a World
Autism is a World


Dear Friends and Colleagues;

This quarter the LIPC newsletter focuses on IEP (Individualized Education Plan) Facilitation and effective communication strategies. We are excited to share information about the NYS Education Department pilot program supporting IEP Facilitation on Long Island and in two districts in NYC. The brochure from New York State Education Department Office of Special Education on IEP facilitation is included in the newsletter. The National Center on Appropriate Dispute Resolution in Education (CADRE), offers multiple publications on Effective Communication, Dispute Resolution and IEP Facilitation. Check out their website and learn from their endless resources, we have also included a video shared on the CADRE site, created by the Pennsylvania Office for Dispute Resolution. "A Tale of Two Conversations" brings us straight to reality and will help to guide discussions as we build relationships between families and professionals.  Videos produced by Nationally recognized trainers in IEP Facilitation, Doug and Joyce Little, are imbedded in the newsletter and will help you to have a better understanding of the framework. Data supporting this method of resolving challenging issues is reported and clearly identifies the positive outcomes that can result from using the IEP Facilitation process.
Each quarter we provide a "resource of the month", this quarter, in honor of  World Autism Awareness Day (April 2nd), we are recommending viewing "Autism is a World". This DVD/Movie is available through Amazon and at many of our local libraries. Autism is a World is a dynamic, fascinating documentary about a woman with Autism, Sue Rubin, her inner world, her writing, and the friends she made while in college.

Each quarter our newsletter will provide you with current events in education, updates from NYS Education Department, the US Department of Education, and regional resources. Our staff enjoys sharing the most interesting articles and information we find as we navigate through our daily work schedules. What we do know is that there never seems to be enough time to read every article, every e-mail, and every memo that is distributed throughout the field. Our goal is to conveniently share with you the most important and interesting information that we find in a timely manner. We encourage you to join our list serve  click here  so in addition to this newsletter you will receive periodic publications and notices that might be of interest to you.

Helene Fallon
Project Coordinator
Acronyms & Key Terms:

IEP  - Individualized Education Program  A written statement for a child with a disability that describes special education programming and related services designed to meet the unique needs of the child. The IEP must include: a statement of the child's present levels of academic achievement and functional progress; measurable annual goals that are designed to enable the child to make progress in the general education curriculum; a description of how the child's progress will be measured; measurable post-secondary school goals. 

CADRE  - The Center for Appropriate Dispute Resolution in Special Education -  works to increase the nation's capacity to effectively resolve special education disputes, reducing the use of expensive adversarial processes. CADRE works with state and local education and early intervention systems, parent centers, families and educators to improve programs and results for children with disabilities. CADRE is funded by the Office of Special Education Programs at the US Department of Education to serve as the National Center on Dispute Resolution in Special Education.
IFSP - Individualized Family Service Plan  A written individualized family service plan developed by a multidisciplinary team, including the parents. Provides a description of the appropriate services for an infant or toddler ages 0-3.  statement of specific early intervention services based on peer-reviewed research, to the extent practicable, necessary to meet the unique needs of the infant or toddler and the family, including the frequency, intensity, and method of delivering services. 

CPSE - Committee on Preschool Special Education - The CPSE must include: the parent of the child, a regular education teacher (if the child is or may be participating in the regular education environment), a special education teacher or related service provider, a representative of the local school district who serves as the chairperson of the CPSE, an individual who can interpret evaluation results, other individuals who have knowledge or special expertise about the child, an additional parent member (unless the parent(s) of the child request that this person not participate), and a licensed or certified professional from the Department of Health's Early Intervention Program (for a child in transition from the Early Intervention Program). A certified or licensed preschool representative from the municipality must be notified of scheduled meetings; however, the CPSE meetings can be held whether or not the municipal representative attends.

NYSDRA- The New York State Dispute Resolution - Association, Inc. is a not-for-profit membership organization committed to the promotion of quality conflict management and peaceful dispute resolution. Through leadership, education, promotion of professional standards and training and development of innovative statewide programs, NYSDRA provides opportunities for people, communities, organizations and businesses to effectively respond to conflict.
IEP Facilitation: A Promising Approach to Resolving Conflicts Between Families and Schools
by Tracy G. Mueller

The Individuals With Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) was created to ensure that students with disabilities receive a free and appropriate public education. One hallmark of IDEA is the promotion of collaboration between school districts and parents of children with disabilities. The letter and spirit of IDEA encourages a working relationship between the home and school that fosters an educational team with the goal of providing the child with appropriate services. IDEA provisions regarding parent involvement imply a picture of the family and school team working together amicably sharing visions and goals, and ultimately making decisions collectively. Unfortunately, this scenario is not always the outcome.

Individualized Education Program (IEP) Meeting Facilitation

When members of a Committee on Special Education (CSE) or Committee on Preschool Special Education (CPSE) meet to develop recommendations for special education services for a student with a disability, there are sometimes disagreements or misunderstandings between parents and school personnel. When these cannot be resolved through regular communication channels, use of IEP Facilitation can be effective. 

IEP Facilitation is voluntary, and both the parent and district must agree to its use. The Facilitator's primary goal is to assist CSE/CPSE members in the thoughtful, productive construction of a quality IEP. This is achieved by encouraging and directing communication around the needs of the student and ensuring that all CSE/CPSE members are working together to develop an IEP that all agree to support.

IEP Facilitation 
Trend Report

The state Wisconsin has used IEP Facilitation for many years. A study of the effectiveness of IEP facilitation in the state was done from 2004-2008. A Summary report of IEP Facilitation data shows the positive outcomes using this process.

 Read more... 
Quick Guide to Special Education Dispute Resolution Processes for Parents of Children & Youth (Ages 3-21)

This guide is not intended to interpret, modify, or replace any IDEA Part B procedural safeguards or requirements of federal or state law. State regulations associated with these processes vary widely. Parents are encouraged to contact their state educational agency or parent center for more information.

Facilitated IEP Meetings: An Emerging Practice

To help special education planning teams reach agreements, several State Education Agencies (SEAs) provide the option of facilitated Individualized Education Program (IEP) meetings. The use of externally facilitated IEP meetings is growing nationally. When relationships between parents and schools are strained, facilitated meetings may be beneficial. 

Engaging Parents in Productive Partnerships

Educators contend with significant pressures resulting from insufficient resources, inadequate professional development opportunities, and an ever-changing landscape of educational initiatives and mandates. Despite such challenges, school staff partner successfully with parents in millions of meetings each year to create appropriate individualized education
programs (IEPs) for students who receive special education and related services.

If you invest early in building trusting working relationships with the parents of students in your school, your contacts with each other can be transformed into more positive experiences. Mutually satisfactory interactions can create a shared history that you can draw upon to prevent disagreements and misunderstandings from escalating into conflict, allowing the time and space to find solutions to challenging situations.

Save the Date:
Upcoming Events

The Long Island Advocacy Center will be hosting two full day trainings on "Transition to Employment."  
May 18 and May 25,  9AM to 3PM
Call LIAC for more information 516-248-2222

Response to Intervention: Training for Parents

Bridging the Gaps:
Medical, Educational, and Familial Systems

Moving Forward in Children's Mental Health Symposium

In the course of day to day business and in the process of writing newsletters, LIPC often comes across resources that may be useful to parents and/or professionals. In this resources section, we share with you the websites that we've found useful this quarter. If you have a resource you have found particularly helpful, we encourage you to share it with us here and we will consider it for the next newsletter. 
  • These two videos, which were developed by the Office for Dispute Resolution in Pennsylvania, feature Dixie Trinen and Suzanne McDougall. The first video shows an example of two people having a difficult conversation using poor communication skills. The second video shows how the same conversation can be conducted in a way that leads to significantly enhanced communication.
  • The Key2Ed founders also founded JDL Associates, and developed individualized education program (IEP) meeting facilitation in the 90s. Today, Key2Ed provides 3-day training in Conflict Resolution and IEP Meeting Facilitation for school districts throughout the country.
We look forward to working with you.  Please check out the LIPC Website for updates on future trainings and workshops and be sure to look for our next newsletter in the spring!