IEP & SCHOOL ADVOCACY

Individualized Education Program (IEP) & School Advocate Services in McKinney, TX 

Whether you’re looking for help understanding your child’s individualized education program, navigating stressful resource meetings with school administrators, or you just want to know more about the positive educational resources available to your child, Dr. Arduengo can help you make the most out of available school resources. 

What Are IEPs? 

Every student who utilizes special educational resources will receive an individualized education program (IEP). These programs outline the available resources a student may need in order to have the best possible chances for academic success. IEPs can include both academic and environmental accommodations to ensure students are able to have a positive educational experience. ​

McKinney IEP Program

Who Are School Advocates? 

School advocates are professionals who have knowledge and experience working with parents, guardians, educators, administrators, and other professionals or stakeholders to create appropriate educational resource plans for students. Assessment psychologists, like Dr. Arduengo, often provide school advocate services to help parents and students navigate complicated educational resource meetings, reports, and processes. In addition to partnering with parents and students for support during IEP meetings, Dr. Arduengo can also provide school advocacy resources in the following situations: 

  • Full and Individual Evaluation (FIE) Reports – these are typically required prior to the Admission, Review, and Dismissal (ARD) meetings, which will be discussed below. They are in-depth reports that compile all of the existing information about a student’s resource and support needs. This may include assessments by private practices like PEARS, PLLC, evaluations through the school system, academic ability and aptitude, classroom observations, interviews with educators and caregivers, and other pertinent details. 

  • Admission, Review, and Dismissal (ARD) Meetings – these are meetings between representatives of the school and a student’s guardians. During these meetings, the FIE reports will be reviewed, and an IEP will be developed for the student. 

  • Section 504 Meetings – section 504 is a federal law that protects the rights of individuals with special needs to gain equitable access to programs that receive federal funding, which includes public schools. Additionally, section 504 outlines what responsibilities the federally funded programs must provide a comparable experience for all participants. In school systems, that means laying out the roles of educators and administrators when it comes to removing barriers that limit or prevent individuals who are seeking education. 

  • Response to Intervention (RtI) or Multi-tier System of Supports (MTSS) – for students who receive educational or environmental accommodations, RtIs are necessary periodically to reassess the value of accommodations and ensure they are still providing the necessary support to help students achieve their goals. RtI can be a part of MTSS, but MTSS has a broader scope than RtI. MTSS also incorporates academic and non-academic (social, emotional, and behavioral) areas. 

How Does Having a School Advocate at IEP Meetings Benefit Students? 

Ensuring our children receive the best resources to achieve academic success is important to every parent and educator. Unfortunately, these resources are often limited by bureaucratic processes that can be frustrating and confusing. When you partner with Dr. Arduengo and PEARS, PLLC, we can help you fully understand and advocate for your child’s needs. For older children and teens, we can also help them become better advocates for their own needs. Our goal is to empower students and parents to feel confident during school meetings. We also help caregivers and students to learn the language used by educators and school administrators, so they can speak to them with increased clarity.

How Do I Schedule Assessments or School Advocate Services from PEARS, PLLC? 

If you’re interested in working with PEARS, PLLC for assessments or school advocate services, it’s easy to get started. You can call or text our McKinney practice at (817) 826-9572 or simply take a few moments to complete our online scheduling request form. Once we hear from you, we will be happy to answer any questions you have and finalize the details of your work with our knowledgeable team.