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18-Oct-2017 15:04

Being a mother or father of a youngster with Asperger’s (AS) or High Functioning Autism (HFA) can be both exhausting and rewarding at the same time.

As the parent, you are responsible for being your child’s advocate.

Being an advocate is not synonymous with being pushy and demanding. Learn the details behind the federal law that effectively created special education, now known as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Fill out an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) for your youngster.

Moms and dads typically have goals for their children, and families of special education children in particular should establish goals – along with a strategy to obtain them. You will be thankful you have this document, which is considered legal and binding in a court of law. If it is not documented in the IEP, your youngster's school does not have to follow it.

Information is power, so moms and dads need to start with the facts about their youngster's disorder. Have fact-based knowledge from your youngster's doctors, specialists, special education experts, attorneys, educators, and anyone else who can provide information. Don't just assume that your youngster’s school doesn't want to meet his or her unique needs and provide educational benefits. However, a wide range of need combined with limited resources often create the potential for conflict between (a) what reasonably can be provided versus (b) the parent wanting what she believes is "best" for her child.

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Make sure to keep those papers neatly organized in a file or notebook.

Propose solutions or create a possible plan that works best for everyone.