It's IEP eve once again. I guess this will be #5. I don't feel any more prepared or experienced than I did at the first one. Back then I think I even remember saying, "I'm just along for the ride." And I wondered why there was a weird silence in the room, and looks. And I thought, am I not supposed to be just along for the ride? Should I be doing more?
Then along the way I learned from others that IEP meetings are generally pretty adversarial. Thankfully, even though we are in a lower income school district, I have never had to argue or fight to get whatever I think Little Squirrel needs. And more thankfully, the early intervention served her well so she doesn't need much, not as far as school goes anyway. Also, I am aware that the school doesn't have a magic wand, or magic wallet, to fix things that could be better for us, or remove bullies (because there will always be more), etc. They have always been great at tracking the progress toward the goals, setting new goals, and overall, for caring about Little Squirrel.
Last year at the IEP meeting there was a moment I won't forget: the whole table of educators looking at me while one spoke on the verge of tears about, "the wonderful things you've done for your daughter." Really that just means sticking with it and putting her first and being involved. But I guess that's not the norm they experience from parents. I can't imagine anyone doing any less.
But it was nice to hear.