Individual education plans are legal documents that establish a specific special education plan in compliance with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Ideally, families and schools work together to establish an IEP that works for everyone involved.
However, sometimes school systems and parents can not agree on an IEP. SpedEx Consultation is one option for parents and schools to resolve a dispute over an IEP.
What is SpedEx Consultation?
SpedEx Consultation is a free dispute resolution option for Massachusetts parents and schools. The program assists schools and families with resolving disputes that involve free and appropriate public education or the least restrictive environment. Parents may request this option if a school has rejected their IEP or they have filed a mediation hearing request. The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education funds the program but it operates independently.
How does SpedEx Consultation work?
Families and schools may choose to use a SpedEx consultation instead of a hearing or mediation. Each party selects a SpedEx Consultant. The Consultants review the evidence and recommend how the parties can meet FAPE and LRE requirements. The family and the school then decide how to resolve the dispute. This process results in a signed IEP in 80% of the cases. The families who are not able to achieve a resolution may return to other options.
Many families who are unable to resolve their disputes with schools can reach agreements with the assistance of an independent third party, such as the SpedEx Consultation program. However, some families may still need to seek legal assistance.