Alternative Dispute Resolution
The Parent Information Center and its projects believe in resolving disputes in the least adversarial manner. Agreements reached at IEP Team meetings by the people who know the child best are also the most sustainable. In order for this to happen, all IEP Team members must know their rights and responsibilities and understand how to fully participate in the special education process.
The Parent Information Center uses materials from the Center for Appropriate Dispute Resolution in Special Education (CADRE) to help families and others to increase the understanding of differing perspectives and effectively resolving special education disputes. CADRE is funded by the Office of Special Education Programs at the US Department of Education to serve as the National Center on Dispute Resolution in Special Education. For more information about CADRE go to http://www.directionservice.org/cadre.
The Parent Information Center on Special Education offers free workshops for parents and others on a variety of topics relating to special education. The workshops are designed to help participants not only increase their understanding of the special education process but also learn how to be more effective members of an IEP Team. These include: Parents & Educators: Partners in the Special Education Process and Creating Agreement: Reducing and Resolving Special Education Disputes. (For a full listing of PIC on Special Education’s workshops, please visit our workshops and training page.)
PIC is a member of the NH Community of Practice (CoP) on Creating Agreement. To increase the possibilities of reaching agreements at the IEP Team level, PIC partnered with the NH Community of Practice on Creating Agreement to conduct two conferences on topics related to resolving disagreements about special education. These conferences focused on strategies to promote dispute resolution at the local level where the control over decisions remains with the parents and school staff who know the child and his or her needs best. Other topics included identifying factors that can help keep conflicts from growing and specific skills that parents and educators can use to work together as partners in the Special Education process.
For more information about the NH Community of Practice on Creating Agreement, including how you can get involved and resources on dispute resolution, visit the Shared Work website .