Work with the School

• Do not be adversarial, accusatory, or hostile with school personnel.

• Do remain polite and diplomatic, and always try to build/maintain positive rapport with teachers and other school staff. Casting blame and being confrontational is almost always counterproductive.

• Do not bypass the classroom teacher by going directly to the administrator with issues or concerns.

• Do grant the teacher the courtesy and professional respect to first meet, share concerns, and try to resolve problems directly with the teacher.

• Do not be unrealistic or overly demanding of teachers with regard to the individual attention and degree of accommodations you expect for your child.

• Do understand the teacher's responsibility to all students in the classroom, and keep in mind what is "reasonable" when making requests of teachers.

• Do not enter meetings with school personnel with a closed mind, preconceived ideas, or the thought that the school does not have your child's best interest in mind.

• Do enter school meetings with an open mind and cooperative attitude. Be willing to share your opinions, feelings, observations, suggestions, and information about your child or family that may help with planning and intervention.

• Do not be afraid to ask questions and request that certain unclear language (educational jargon) be explained.

• Do ask for clarification on anything you do not understand.

• Do not feel you must accept the school's proposed plan of intervention if you are not comfortable with that plan or feel it is not addressing your child's needs.

• Do know that your input is welcome and generally requested by the school. No plans are set in stone; and they can always be reviewed and changed, if not working. Also, be assured that any plans or placement (for example, IEPs/special education programs) cannot go into effect without your agreement and written consent.

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