FASD is beginning to be more recognized and accommodated in schools. However, this recognition is new, and some schools may be more aware than others about FASD. When working with the school, present yourself as a resource who will make things better for the child and easier for the teacher. Encourage the school to consult with you to plan ahead to avoid issues and if challenges arise. (FASD Waterloo Region, 2013c)
- Introduce yourself to the school, administrative team, and any new teachers before your child begins school or a new school year
- Ask for a transition planning meeting to discuss your child’s unique strengths and challenges and what has worked to accommodate them in the past and what supports may be accessed at the school
- Help teachers to understand that the goal with your child is interdependence (independence may not be a reasonable goal for your child) and to carefully monitor the level of support they need
- Ensure your child has an Individual Education Plan (IEP) which documents the required individual supports, accommodations, modifications, learning methods, and education goals. Review the IEP regularly and work collaboratively with the school team when changes to the IEP are necessary. Your child does not need a diagnosis or IPRC to have an IEP.
- Ensure your child with an FASD diagnosis has an Individual Placement Review Committee (IPRC) meeting; if not, ask for one. This process determines “exceptionality” and “placement” with the Ministry of Education. The IPRC process is outlined on the Ministry of Education website
- When your child begins a new year or starts at a new school ensure you have a transition plan
- Make yourself familiar with all the education supports in your geographic area to determine what might assist your child to have success at school (FASD ONE, 2014).