BlogGeneralStudent-Led Planning to Promote Independence in Special Education

Student-Led Planning to Promote Independence in Special Education

This guide will assist your child with a learning disability in achieving the independence required for high school, college education, and job. As children progress through middle school and prepare for high school and beyond, there is a growing expectation that they will be able to manage and complete their assignments on their own. For some families, this can be a difficult transition, but there is a range of technology solutions and other concessions that can help your child acquire independence at a comfortable pace. Assistive technology refers to tools that give children new methods to perform coursework that take advantage of their abilities. Fortunately, text-to-speech technology is included in many modern technologies, such as mobile devices and laptops (a feature that reads aloud).

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    Assistive technology is frequently integrated into or complements the technology used by all pupils. Using the appropriate assistive technology (AT) allows your child to do things independently that previously required assistance from you or school personnel. Assistive technology, when combined with the correct accommodations and family support, can be an important component of your child’s plan for increasing independence.

    • Step 1: Set priorities for your child’s independence as the first step.

    Identify what skills and tasks your youngster wants to do on his or her own.

    “Are there any activities at school or at home that your teachers or I assist you with that you wish you could accomplish on your own?” ask your child. Tell your child about the areas of his or her scholastic achievement that make you proud, as well as the abilities you’d like to see them develop.

    • Step 2: Consider what your child will need to learn in high school and beyond.

    “What are the tasks that my child will need to accomplish independently as he or she prepares for high school and eventually for postsecondary education?” Ask yourself. What talents would s/he require to complete those tasks successfully?” Make a list of all of your answers.

    Consider this list and determine the skills your child is working on, as well as the level of independence he or she can achieve with these talents. Determine which skills on the list your child isn’t practicing and when they should start.

    • Step 3: Encourage your child to take more responsibility for their IEP and reassure them that you are available to help.

    Your parental support and encouragement promote your child’s independence and involvement in their own education. When it comes to advocating for their needs, it’s critical that your child finds their own voice. Make sure your child understands what an IEP is and why they have one. Answer any questions your child may have and highlight the importance of them assisting you and the school staff in developing a plan.

    It’s possible that you’ll have to transition from being a coursework assistant to something else.

    Consider creating a “schoolwork contract” with your child to assist you both specify where your help is required and what valuable skills your child will finish on his or her own. A contract can help define a pattern for schooling and minimize grey areas about expectations, which is especially useful if completing assignments is a source of conflict.

    Share the practices that are effective at home to improve academic independence with the IEP team, and request that they be replicated at school.

    • Step 4: Discuss goals for your child’s independence with his or her Individualised Education Program (IEP) team.

    The goals you set with your child’s IEP team will aid in his or her development of independence and have an impact on how important abilities are improved.

    Discuss your expectations for your child in high school and beyond, and inquire about the skills that the IEP team believes are necessary to achieve those objectives. Assist your kid in learning how to communicate with the IEP team about their future goals, as well as their strengths and problems. Talk to your teachers about the tactics you employ at home to develop greater independence and how they might be replicated at school. If your goal is to help your child organize his or her ideas for a written project while still allowing the child to compose the assignments independently, you may ask school staff to do the same.

    Determine the abilities your kid needs to improve in order to become more independent and make IEP goals to support that growth. Consider what adjustments your kid might require and whether any current accommodations could be changed or withdrawn to support academic independence. Inquire with your IEP team about what assistive technology they think will help your child become more independent, and make preparations to explore and use AT.

    Next, look into and employ assistive technology (AT) to help your youngster become more independent.

    • 5th Step: Discuss your objectives with an AT professional.

    Several schools and school districts get an assistive technology specialist on staff who can address your child’s questions concerning AT. Request a referral from your IEP team. An assessment of your child’s requirements may be included in AT services. Someone who is familiar with technological options should do the assessment.

    If your school district lacks an AT specialist, speak with the speech-language pathologist, occupational therapist, or special educators about possible assistive technology to investigate.

    Many states provide assistive technology resource centers where you can get answers to your problems from AT specialists. Discuss your child’s objectives, needs, and abilities with the AT specialist.

    Before discussing technology possibilities, chat with the AT specialist about your kid’s objectives, needs, and abilities, and encourage your child to communicate about their strengths, needs, and experiences with technology. Refer back to the list you made in step 1 and inquire about technologies and tactics that could assist your child to improve the skills he or she is working on. Inform them about your child’s current digital usage, including computers, tablets, and cellphones. This will allow the AT professionals to tailor their replies to your child’s specific needs.

    • Step 6: Experiment with assistive technologies.

    Now that you have some ideas for assistive technology that might be useful, it’s time for your child to try out several different technology possibilities to see what might work best for them. Make a note in the IEP about what you’re trying. Here are two excellent locations to start:

    Your school system may have an AT programme that provides your child with access to appropriate technology. This might include a gadget and software lending library at the school or across the district. Make certain to inquire if such resources exist.

    To see if a local assistive technology resource center has the technology you want to try, contact them. Put something in place if the correct assistive technology isn’t available for loan.

    Put something else in the IEP over how your child will test the device you’re interested in if the correct assistive technology isn’t available for loan. The school should make every effort to give your child the technology that has been requested.

    Once you have access to the AT you want to try, figure out who to contact if you have any questions about it while you’re using it. The school district’s AT services may include training for family members.

    Request input from your child on the AT he or she is using, and compare it to your findings of how the technology affects your child’s education. Remember that your child’s level of comfort with the AT is a critical component that could determine whether or not he or she uses it. Encourage your youngster to try out different gadgets to see what works best for them.

    Also read: Student Engagement Strategies: Encouraging Behavioral, Emotional, and Cognitive Engagement in Your Course.


    Q1. What is the full form of AT?

    Answer. Assisted Technology.

    Q2. How does Assistive technology (AT) help your children?

    Answer. Assistive technology (AT) allows your child to do things independently that previously required assistance from you or school personnel.

    Q3. What is the full notation of IEP?

    Answer. Individualised Education Program (IEP).

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