IEP to 504 and STAAR

Discussion of issues related to Special Education.
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Mom
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Joined: Sun Feb 23, 2020 9:16 am

Mon Mar 09, 2020 12:58 pm

Our child has an IEP for dyslexia. We are planning to move to a 504 as our child is doing well and on the honor roll. Our child has never passed the STAAR but does well in school. The IEP that is in place focuses on passing the staar and the interventions we are getting is to read STAAR passages and answer questions. This is our 1st year opting out.

What would the schools perspective be if we switch to 504 now vs waiting til next year if we are opting out? We want to make the switch now... I heard that SPED doesnt count into their #'s? Trying to mitigate the fightback when we are making 2 big changes back to back. Would it help if we send the Dual Enrollment for homeschooling form for the week of STAAR? We are in AISD.


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scott.placek
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Mon Mar 09, 2020 2:36 pm

I would be careful here. In high school, having an IEP lets the school graduate the student without passing STAAR EOCs. With a 504, that is not possible. I see no reason to make the change.
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Mom
Posts: 7
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Mon Mar 09, 2020 6:02 pm

We have had issues with the school in the past. They are looking for ways to place my child in Inclusion even though they are doing great and not needing support. The only way I can figure to get around this would be to move them to 504 to get us out of luke warm water......
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sherry.neeley
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Mon Mar 09, 2020 6:15 pm

This question requires a big and multifaceted answer, so hang with me.

The easy stuff:
The school would probably be thrilled to move a kid from an IEP to a 504. Yes, they'll lose a little bit of funding, but it removes nearly all responsibility for your child's success from their shoulders.

SpEd DOES count in their numbers.

Dual Enrollment is an argument that has never been challenged or ruled on. Please read the link here (http://www.txedrights.net/tag/dual-enrollment/). It's possible...

The hard stuff:
I am THRILLED that your kid has an IEP in Texas for dyslexia. It's nearly impossible to get because they prefer to push off on 504. You're sitting on an unicorn that should be used to its full advantages!

A couple of notes on that...
1> GREAT job that the grades have improved. That's awesome for self esteem and shows something is working! But remember, grades are subjective. Grades are not the only goal of an IEP. And when a child starts to perform well for the first time it is NOT the time to yank the rug out from under them.

2> (Remember, I hate STAAR...) The fact that your child has NEVER passed a STAAR tells me that you have a solid argument to to keep your child ON an IEP. While we argue that they are NOT appropriate grade level standards, the school argues that it IS. It is THEIR measuring stick for success. Your child is NOT succeeding in their eyes if they aren't passing STAAR. This tells me that your child either has severe testing anxiety or is still in need of remediation (probably both). While still opting out of STAAR, you can argue that it is NOT the time to remove the supports.

3> It is 100% INAPPROPRIATE for the IEP to focus exclusively on STAAR. The goals should be based on data from diagnostic testing. And since your student has dyslexia, the processes used should be in accordance with the Texas Dyslexia Handbook (https://tea.texas.gov/sites/default/fil ... 1_2018.pdf). The large majority of programs used in SpEd for reading intervention are NOT good programs.

4> You need to know that one of the big reasons SpEd parents opt out is that the passages on the STAAR cannot be read to the child. Even if it's in their accommodations for classroom and regular testing. TEA wont allow it. EVER.

5> A child should NOT be removed from an IEP until new diagnostic testing has been completed and ALL areas have been FULLY remediated. For a dyslexic kid this would include tests like the GORT, PAL2, CTOPP2, WJ4, TWS, etc that show that phonemic awareness, reading (speed, accuracy, fluency, comprehension), spelling (orthographic knowledge, encoding), and writing are all at normal ranges and the child is performing at grade level with peers.

Stuff you didn't ask:
When a student is on an IEP the ARD makes the decisions for promotion, retention, and graduation. That means they (YOU are an ARD team member) have powers to bypass the process all gen ed kids (including 504) must follow. The ARD can waive the need to retest in 5th and 8th grade. The ARD can waive the requirement to pass EOCs in high school. The 504 team CANNOT do these things.

In order for the ARD to waive the requirements, the student will need to 'attempt' it once. An active refusal counts as an attempt.

My Opinion:
I would request new data to see where your child is actually at. I would revamp the IEP to meet those specific needs. I would remove ALL STAAR prep from it. I would keep the IEP as long as possible, until ALL areas are remediated fully. I would teach my child to actively opt out. Best path would be on makeup days, either on computer (advance to end and hit submit) or on paper (student writes refuse and parent ensures that student goes back to class). I would then request the ARD meet (according to LAW https://tea.texas.gov/sites/default/fil ... tagged.pdf PAGE 23-26) and waive additional AI & retakes in order to promote based on IEP goal progress and grades.
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sherry.neeley
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Mon Mar 09, 2020 6:18 pm

For inclusion, repeat the words LRE Lease Restrictive Environment. The student's grades do not support removal from core classes unless a specific need that CANNOT be addressed in the classroom environment is needed (and supported by data)
Mom
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Wed Mar 11, 2020 8:45 pm

That worked.... No inclusion so glad but now they are saying my child is doing so well they are hoping to let go of the IEP b4 high school.

Agree, services offered in public schools don't work for all children like mine. There is a bit of remediation that is left that I'm hoping to cover with an OG program (provided privately). So I've changed my plan for this year in hopes to keep the IEP for as long as I can.

So in this particular case would it be better to take the STAAR? That way if we fail that would ensure we keep the IEP longer? They are upping goals to 80-90%. Which if I think about it would be good too.... Somewhere in there we should have success right? even if we dont use the staar?
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