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(4.34) Under what circumstances should the regular teacher of a special education student participate in the IEP?

(4.34) Under what circumstances should the regular teacher of a special education student participate in the IEP?

Federal law and regulations require that your child’s regular education teacher, as a member of the IEP team, to the extent appropriate, participate in the development of the IEP. This includes the determination of appropriate positive behavioral interventions and strategies; the determination of supplementary aids and services, program modifications, support for school personnel; and the review or revision of the IEP. [34 C.F.R. Secs. 300.324(a)(3) & (b)(3); Cal. Ed. Code Sec. 56341(b)(2).]

A regular education teacher is required to attend the IEP meeting if the child is, or may be, participating in a general education program.  Any member of the IEP team, including the regular education teacher, may be excused from attending if the district and the parent agree in writing. An excused member must still submit input to the team in writing, prior to the meeting, if the meeting is concerned with their area of service or curriculum. [34 C.F.R. Sec. 300.321.]

The law does not address how a school district decides which teacher should attend an IEP meeting. However, the regular education teacher should be someone who has knowledge of the student or a teaching intervention and/or is responsible for implementing a portion of the IEP.

For an IEP meeting at the middle or high school level, where there are multiple regular education teachers for a given student, the law does not require that they all attend. If you are seeking modifications or accommodations in subjects taught by particular teachers, you should request their presence in writing.