Prior Written Notice is a Powerful Tool When Skillfully Used

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by Jeff Martin, Esq.

Essentially, IDEA 2004 requires the IEP team to formally and logically accept or reject any suggestions or requests that an IEP team member makes. (34 C.F.R. § 300.503.) As parents, we are members of the IEP team!

I like the form created by Judy Bonnell and available on Wrightslaw.com. This is the type of form that I will use for my daughter’s next IEP meeting.

A More Extensive PWN Form – Includes “Tabled” Actions
I sensed with some clients, who require “big ticket” educational needs like private placement or a one-on-one paraprofessional, I needed a more extensive form to really get the IEP team’s attention and to develop the record for future action.

Bringing out the PWN form is a show stopper.
Saying “no” is too easy for some IEP teams. Articulating “an explanation of why the agency . . . refuses to take the action and a description of each evaluation procedure, assessment, record, or report the agency used as a basis for the . . . refused action” (20 U.S.C. 1415(c)) is tough. As an advocate, I can remain nice and let the law be the bad guy!

Read more. Wrightslaw.