Schools are closed, and (virtual) doors are open, so what’s the way in?
Let’s face it. The landscape keeps changing and old roadmaps don’t apply. Everyone is trying to adjust and connect. For many, just getting through the day is enough. Educational goals are more likely to be social/emotional than academic. And that’s just fine for now. Staying engaged and in a learning mode can take many forms.
Some of the more pressing issues might include:
- getting connected online;
- locating assistive technology resources; and
- accessing support and therapies.
Continuous Educational Plan
The Office of Superindentent (OSPI) has created the Continual Educational Plan to support (not replace) the IEP. It’s a way to work with students and families one by one to prioritize the IEP goals you most want to work on. Some things to consider as you plan:
- Focus on what is needed now: relationships, communication, emotional and mental health.
- Include assistive technology, and make it concrete.
- If your school district contracts for School Based Health Care Services (SBHS), include telehelath therapies.
- Prepare for what may be needed when schools re-open and physical distancing (and face coverings) might still be required. Use social stories to start the conversation. Are there things to do at home to get used to this new way of keeping safe and healthy?
For more information about Continuous Educational Plans, visit wapave.org and read PAVE’s recent article, IEP on Pause? How to Support Continuous Learning with School Buildings Closed.
Advocacy & Support
Parent to Parent
Office of Education Ombuds
Washington Autism Alliance and Advocacy
Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction
Technology and Communications
Internet and phone resources. Locate free cell phones, low cost internet service, and other assistive technology resources.
Telecommunication Equipment Distribution (TED) Program. Devices and apps for anyone who lives in Washington State (over age 4) and who is deaf, hard of hearing, deaf-blind, or has difficulty with speech.
Education During COVID-19 (PDF)