My child is transitioning to kindergarten next year and there is this 'transition' meeting coming up in January. Is it important?

Answer: it can be extremely important if you make it so.
The form letter provided by PaTTAN for Early Internvention programs to use states one reason as to “provide you an opportunity to ask questions and share concerns”. This seems an understatement.

It is a federally mandated means for parents to get important information about the resources and services their district provides in advance --- to prepare for the IEP and set the tone for the next 12+ years negotiating with the district. So it is valuable access to district staff who have knowledge and authority to answer questions.

If district information is relevant to you making an informed choice about your child’s future 12+ educational years, it likely is your right to know it, under IDEA. It is also your right to know it before the IEP meeting, and preferably before any decision to re-evaluate or waive re-evaluation. And, there are lots of important details not on district websites.

  • current resources and those already budgeted for next year (autistic support classes, ESY, etc)
  • current reading, language and math curriculums used in general ed and those available through special ed or RTI (Response to Intervention, a public school program for students struggling to learn to read that your district may or may not have in place).
  • transportation resources for kids with medical, elopement, A/c, ramp access and other needs
  • teacher and specialist training and expertise
  • adaptive PE
  • behavior support programs and practices, statistics on using suspensions/detentions on elementary age children
  • Assistive Technology, such as FM systems, laptops, software,
  • anti-bullying programs, social skills groups

Pattan offers advance look at documents you will be expected to read, digest and act upon immediately at the Kindergarten Transition meeting.
Read them now, digest and prepare:

1. PaTTAN Notice document on transition options
2. PaTTAN Form letter about Kindergarten transition process
3. PaTTAN intent to register for Kindergarten form
4. Pattan Permission to evaluate your child prior to Kindergarten

** Download my free Parent Advocacy Worksheet to help you maximize the value of theTransition Meeting for your child here. (pdf)

Any questions you do not get answered at the meeting, you can follow up with later with the people you have met. If you only are given 15 minutes, put a star next to the questions you'd like answered first. And note, not all of the questions will be relevant to your child. For instance, if your child has no gross motor issues, it is unlikely you need to know if the district offers adaptive PE.

    contact me © 2011 Amber Mintz 610-927-9904- business hours; 9am to 4pm Monday to Friday