IST Meeting (Instructional Support Team)

Discussion in 'Special Ed 101' started by Gaia, Nov 15, 2007.

  1. Gaia

    Gaia New Member

    This morning was the IST meeting:

    "It is strange how I was not sure what to expect, and yet I feel like it was not what I expected.
    It was Rob and me, Mrs. Z (E's teacher), J (school counselor), Dr. P (school psychologist), and the assistant principal (I forget her name, she is filling in for the asst principal that is on maternity leave). I think Mrs. Z was hoping for some suggestions on what to do for Eric. Dr. P pretty much confirmed that we are doing the best we can. Unfortunately, Eric has an extreme case of anxiety and it will take a long time to see any improvement. *sigh* Dr. P also said that an IEP and a 405 plan will not help Eric. If he cannot even do work when I am in the room with the teacher and only 1 other child, a smaller classroom will not be the answer. I feel like the only thing I got out of this meeting is that they are supportive, they want to help him, and we are all on the same page. But no one knows quite what to do.

    I spoke with M (Eric's social worker) after the meeting. I will be meeting with her alone next Tuesday to discuss a strategy in his treatment. We will write it down and share it with the school. I like that idea. She told me that she thinks I am doing a great job with Eric so far. Too bad I don't feel like I am. She also said that the next IST meeting I go to, she will come. I like that idea too.

    So no tears today, and I am at work. I see another glass of wine in my future tonight."
  2. Sheila

    Sheila Moderator

    Poor little guy. And poor mom.

    I can't add much to what's already been said in the two threads linked above except that school districts must hold students to the same general standards (behavior-wise and academically) unless the student is identified as a student with a disability. A student must qualify via the school district's evaluation process for an IEP under IDEA. Although he may not be able to be responsive/participate in the various assessments the school district will use for the evaluation, it gives them information they need about present levels of performance, adaptive behavior, and information to ultimately determine eligibility.

    I do not agree that an IEP will do no good for your child. Without it, the school district will eventually have to try to force him to conform and perform. When they do, it will likely create additional problems. But legally, there's only so much they can do without an IEP in place.

    I don't know what your child may need, but a few examples of what a school district can not do without the child having an IEP.

    provide a 1:1 aide
    provide smaller classroom setting
    provide homebound services
    provide related services (Occupational Therapist (OT),language therapy, etc.)

    I do agree that a 504 Plan would not be helpful -- they often are not helpful even in simple situations where they should be.

    As discussed in one of your other threads, I also strongly encourage you to get a private neuropsychologist evaluation or a private multidisciplinary evaluation.
  3. SRL

    SRL Active Member

    I'd also like to add a therapeutic day school to the above list. School districts will almost never mention this option because it's very costly for them. Many children do well in that setting though.

    Sheila, since the district is acknowledging they don't know what to do with him, shouldn't they be involving a consultant who has experience with this? I was appalled by what seems to be a we don't know what to do so we're not going to do anything approach.

    Gaia, I don't know exactly who inititated the study team meeting but if you haven't already done so, you will want to write a letter and send it certified mail requesting a full and complete evaluation. This will set legal time lines in place for them to follow up with a formal evaluation with follow up services and a written plan which will guarantee your son rights under special education law. Neither the kindergarten screening or this meeting will do that for him. Don't assume that they are initiating this process--there would be a specific meeting with you signing to authorize them to evaluate him and if they can't do the assessment, involving professionals who can.
  4. SRL

    SRL Active Member

    Opps, I just saw your reply on Easy Child. Sheila we must have been posting at the same time.
  5. Sheila

    Sheila Moderator

    Tis true. And therapeutic day school is a good example for Gaia.

    For newcomers to the Special Education process, if a student qualifies for an IEP, there are numerous services available if a student needs them. IEP = Individual Education Plan. The plan should be designed for the child's unique needs.

    When I write "available," that doesn't mean if the school already offers it. If a school can't provide a needed service, they must contract with an individual or entity that can provide the service.

    Yes, they should.

    Along these same lines, if for instance, it is "suspected" that a student has seizures, the medical evaluation that would identify the disorder should be part of the school district's evaluation. School district personnel can not do this type of evaluation. They would have to contract with a doctor that does.

    Gaia, I wouldn't assume the school district is going to get an evaluation underway. As SRL indicated, you can get the process kicked off by sending a letter via Certified Mail requesting the evaluation. is a sample letter if you need it. There are others in the Sp Ed Archives.

    There's a "Getting Started" thread in the Sp Ed Archives that may be helpful for you also.