Toolbox Tuesday!! Annual ARD and “the question”….

Having a lot of annual ARD meetings these days?  It’s pretty common to have the annual in the spring so that you can review progress this year, and develop an IEP for next year.  As you consider each student’s situation, you are going to be asked this question:

Does the student have behaviors that impede the learning of the student or others?

That question is in your forms, with a YES and a NO box.  I know it’s in your forms because it’s required by federal law.  Here are three things to think about as you answer that question.

First, notice that it does not limit the question to behaviors that arise from the student’s disability.  This is not a preliminary manifestation determination. It’s a simpler question: does the student exhibit behaviors that “impede” the learning of this student or of others?

Second, remember that behaviors that “impede learning” are not always loud, disruptive, and obvious.  That depressed and quietly withdrawn student sitting in the corner, alone at lunch and on the playground, may be showing signs of behaviors that impede that student’s learning.  How are the student’s grades? Is depression impeding educational progress?  Don’t ignore it.

Third, if you answer “yes” the minutes of the ARDC meeting should reflect the discussion that followed. What do you want to do about it?  How to address these behaviors?  A “yes” answer does not require a FBA and a BIP, but it does require some thoughtful discussion.

We talk about all this in our firm’s Toolbox Trainings.  Let me know if you are interested in one.


Tomorrow: Memories of Cinco de Mayo….