LOGAN TWP. — Jenn’s daughter is in 5th grade at Logan Elementary School, and she learns differently than other kids her age. She has an IEP plan in place, which gives her the tools she needs to be successful in the classroom.
Jenn, like many other parents of children with an IEP or 504 plan, was thrown into a large sea full of jargon and overwhelming meetings, filled with words like “accommodations”, “compliance” and “intervention”. Parents try so hard to keep themselves afloat in these unfamiliar waters, wanting so badly to help their child, but often sink because of their lack of knowledge on how to navigate the process.
Jenn’s challenge began when her daughter was in kindergarten, trying to understand and exercise her daughter’s rights and figure out what special education accommodations would best fit her daughter’s needs. Jenn is not alone in this….so many other parents are struggling as well.
Enter SEPAC. SEPAC is a Special Education Parent Advisory Committee. The Logan Township School District is launching their new group and looking for parents to join.
This committee is a network for parents of kids with special education disabilities (or even if you’re just a parent who has a hunch that your child may learn differently and you’re searching for input or resources), who come together to discuss issues that affect daily activities, regarding their children.
SEPAC is an opportunity for parents to partner with special education professionals and school district officials. Parents share important information and generate ideas with a goal of positively impacting and improving services and supports for children.
They also host monthly workshops with guest speakers covering a variety of topics such as advocacy, managing defiant behavior, and parent’s rights. The next workshop will be Understanding the Role of a Parent Advocate on Tuesday Nov. 15 at 6:30 p.m. in the Logan Elementary School Library.
Being a member of SEPAC is such a unique and beneficial way to help children and parents. This group is creating amazing opportunities for children.
One of their first endeavors was orchestrating the installation of a “Buddy Bench” on the school playground. For Lydia’s son recess was the most stressful part of his school day.
He often had a hard time finding other kids to play with. The “Buddy Bench” is a tool for children who need extra help making friends at recess. When children see someone sitting on the “Buddy Bench” they immediately ask them to play.
A SEPAC parent is able to share their general concerns and interact with school officials and special education professionals. Parents are informed on their child’s special education rights and changing legislature.
Most importantly though, Jenn, Lydia, and other parents are able to be the voice for their son and daughter and other children who learn differently. SEPAC is the voice for children who cannot speak up for themselves.
If you are interested in learning more please attend their next workshop on Tuesday, Nov. 15 or email LoganSEPAC@gmail.com for more information.
*Special thank you to Logan Twp. Acme for providing refreshments for the workshops.
Upcoming meeting and workshop topics include:
January – Parent Share; February – What is CMO; March – Breakdown of the IEP; April – Knowing Your Rights as a Parent: May – Parent Share; and June – Managing Defiant Behavior. Date and time of the workshops will be announced later.