A parent of a child with a disability recently said to me: “I can tell you parents sometimes just don’t know what to ask at the IEP meeting, how to ask, or even if a question is needed. You don’t know what you don’t know.” Parents are constructive IEP participants when they are able to discuss their child’s educational problems with us, as well as learn about our specific educational solutions before attending an IEP meeting. Demystifying what you don’t know before attending an IEP meeting is critical to the parent’s ability to have influence over their child’s special education experience. This often leads to successful approaches, beneficial conversation, and students best interest IEP meeting. Resource Education consultants recommend you bring notes. List your own goals for your child. Start with making long-term goals. Take these notes to the meeting and write them in your words. Also Know how to say no. Take a firm stand on important issues. Be willing to compromise only when you feel you can do a better job at home or by utilizing private resource. Expect to get what your child needs. Choose your fight carefully, use the phrase “that is unacceptable.” Have your argument ready, know what you want, expect professionalism. Get areas of disagreement written on the plan. Don’t be rushed into accepting anything; IEP’s can be continued at a later date. The IEP will go forward without your signature, but you need to document your disagreement in case you wish to take the issue to due process.