Image via WikipediaParents get progress reports every year. It comes with the regularity of the morning paper and often with just as much bad news. Progress by school standards can differ greatly with our assessment and vice versa. Yay, he writes so well, the teacher says to Mom. But, he has no friends! Mom says freaking out.
My advice to all parents is to define first, for yourself, what progress is, and then determine if you're seeing any. We don't just want kids who can copy and paste learning. We want functional, social individuals with thinking skills. This goes for all students.
Istar is a monitor of progress, too. If you see over the course of the IEP that your child has stalled out and appears stuck on the same goals. It's time to try something else. Step one, check for a medical issue undiagnosed or recently developed. Step two, look at classroom structure to see if anything can be done differently. Step three, repeat step two or look at the options like placement or extended schoo year. Does your child need more drastic measures to move forward?
Parents can define priorities, and that helps prepare for writing your plans each year. It's okay to ask yourself what you and your child need this year and expect an answer!