How do you share Individual Education Plans with general education teachers? I spent some time this summer reflecting on how I as a special education teacher have shared them and then during my stint as a general education teacher what worked best for me. Through this reflection, I came to the conclusion that I like when all the documents are in one place, especially when they are coming from multiple case managers.
So how can we do this at the secondary level when we share documents with multiple teachers? The truth is I couldn’t figure out an efficient way using Google Drive folders that was manageable for the team. As an elementary special education teacher, I envision creating a folder in Google Drive for each teacher and then share it with them and my fellow special education case managers. Everyone involved with a student has access to the documents related to the students we share. In the secondary setting, a student can have 5 or more teachers. As I thought through how we could do this the process became overwhelming and seemed difficult to manage. I was exhausted just thinking about it.
Luckily I didn’t have to come up with a plan B. This year the school district decided to give general education teachers direct access to the program we use to create and manage our special education paperwork. When they log in they see their classes and can access documents for all the students they work with. I wish this had been available when I was a general education teacher. I took many trips to the office to dig through the file cabinet to learn about students. How wonderful to have it available on my computer. As this rolled out before school started we got positive responses from teachers. Once they figured out how to navigate the site they were excited about the information that was available and the fact that they had it when they needed it.
Moving forward we will make sure the general education teacher is included in a message that the updated IEP is active so they too can log in and review the new plan. When the quarter or semester changes we will send an email reminding everyone to check their class lists for new students and to review any new IEPS.
In fact, I have already set up the email so I don’t forget to do this using a Gmail lab called Canned Response and Boomerang a Chrome Extension. Check out these videos to see how you too can do this.
I also have a document called “IEP at a Glance” I use this when new students move to our school and their paperwork isn’t available in the IEP management program. Here is a link to a FREE copy of my document.
Do you have an efficient way to share IEP information with general education teachers? I’d love to hear about it.