Iep edited

Individual Education Plan
Individual Education Plan for Children with Disabilities
One can define a disability as a limitation of physical or mental faculties that may be
disadvantaged in everyday life. Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), 2004, seeks
to include children with special needs into the education system. This inclusion, of course, is
with the view that disability is not inability. This paper discusses Individual Education Programs
(IEP), set under IDEA. It touches on Individual Education Programs’ goals, setup, achievements,
and shortcomings.
Individual Education Programs (IEP)
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, set up in 2004, aims to have children
with disabilities included in a free learning program under the special needs education system.
Special needs education refers to education given to children with special needs that address their
differences while integrating them as much as possible in the typical educational environment of
their peers (Benitez and Carugno, 2020).
Individual Education Programs make sure that every child with disabilities gets educated.
Individual Education Programs ensure that every child with a disability receives the proper
education benefit (Bateman, 2017). Right from infancy, IDEA follows up on the child’s progress
through an Individualized Family Service Plan. The plan checks the ability of the family, both
physical and financial, in meeting the needs of the child with a disability (IDEA, 2004)
The Individual Education Program under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act
(IDEA) expects all public schools to accommodate learners with special needs. The schools
should be able to meet all the needs of these learners in education. (Barrio et al., 2020) Public
schools should be in a position to follow each student’s IEP. The IEP aims to make sure that
every student gets all their needs met as per the guidelines of IDEA (2004). IEP sets the standard
for Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) for learners with special needs.
One may argue that FAPE can sometimes be limited and fail to deliver as per the needs
of the individual learner. Hott et al., 2020) note that it is not the FAPE that is at fault here but
rather a poorly drawn IEP. They feel that this program may sometimes fail to meet the exact
needs of learning difficulties. This failure can happen if the child only gets general knowledge on
a subject they would like to specialize in. This failure beats the purpose of the FAPE altogether.
The IEP team.
It is essential to note that a well-drawn Individual Education program is at the core of
success for learners with special needs. The team involved in the implementation of the IEP
should also follow due diligence in ensuring that this program successfully meets the learner’s
needs (Barrio et al., 2020).
One can ask, in this case: For an IEP to work, who should be involved? The IEP team
should include: the parent or guardian, one or more general education teachers, a special
education teacher, a representative of the local education agency, a psychologist or someone else
who can interpret evaluation results, anyone else who may have some expertise in the condition
of the student, and in some cases the student can be a part of the team. Each of these individuals
has a crucial role in formulating the best IEP for the individual student (Barrio et al., 2020).
One cannot undermine the role of the parent in the making and implementation of the
IEP. The parent, in this case, refers to the biological or foster parent or guardian. The parent is
the first caregiver of the child and, therefore, the best person to answer critical questions on the
individual child’s abilities, limitations, behavior, and social capability. It is the right of the parent
to consent to the IEP until the child attains the age of 18 (Barrio et al., 2020). After 18, the
student can consent to their own IEP.
On the other hand, the teacher is the person who will be directly involved in the
implementation and success of the IEP. It is therefore essential to equip the teacher with all
requirements for the success of the program. Teacher burn-out is an everyday occurrence in IEP,
and this affects the overall outcome of the program. Burn-out can be avoided by improving
teacher quality and student engagement (Wong et al., 2017).
Where possible, the student should be involved in the IEP meeting. According to
Mitchell, et al. 2019, such involvement makes the child feel like a partner in the decisionmaking. In turn, this leads to more cooperation and collaboration. During such a meeting, the
student can be helped to understand their abilities, limitations and their role in making their own
IEP successful.
Individual Education Programs have been used to successfully ensure that no child is left
behind in the pursuit of education. They have eased the burden on both the family and the
individual children with disabilities. The main goal of the Individuals with Disabilities Education
Act is met squarely through the Individual Education Programs. The few grievances continue to
be addressed, and hopefully, in the future, this program will be able to serve all children with
disabilities the world over.
Benitez, A., & Carugno, P. (2020). Special education. StatPearls [Internet].
Bateman, B. D. (2017). Individual education programs for children with disabilities.
In Handbook of special education (pp. 87-104). Routledge.
Barrio, B. L., Hott, B. L., & Randolph, K. M. (2020). DEVELOPING AN INDIVIDUALIZED
EDUCATION PROGRAM. Special Education Law and Policy: From Foundation to
Application, 227.
Wong, V. W., Ruble, L. A., Yu, Y., & McGrew, J. H. (2017). Too stressed to teach? Teaching
quality, student engagement, and IEP outcomes. Exceptional children, 83(4), 412-427.
Mitchell, V. J., Moening, J. H., & Panter, B. R. (2019). Student-led IEP meetings: Developing
student leaders. JADARA, 42(4), 8.

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