Welcome 2020
     ~In this Issue~

Special Education:
Thinking About Transition to High School for Students with IEPs and 504 Plans

Family Law:
Apps for Divorcing Parents

Special Needs Considerations in Divorce

Upcoming Presentations
Seclusion and Restraint Conference:
  Implementing ISBE's Emergency Rules
January 24, 2020 @ Loyola University School of Law

Micki Moran is an organizer and will be presenting as a panelist addressing compliance with laws governing the use of restraint and seclusion in Illinois schools, including recent changes Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) rules.  Click for more details

Special Education Law for Speech and Language Pathologists

February 6th, 2020 at 12:00 pm
Donald E. Stephens Convention Center, Rosemont  Room 23-24

Micki Moran will focus on legal issues relevant to school based speech and language therapists.  Recent changes in the law will be discussed. There will be a real world emphasis on IEP development and practical solutions for meeting the requirements under the IDEA.
Thinking About Transition to High School for Students 
with IEPs and 504 Plans

At this time of year, elementary and middle schools schedule, what are called. articulation or transition meetings for students who will be moving on to a junior high or a high school.
The purpose of this article is to provide advice and guidance to get the most out of these meetings and to develop a blueprint for moving forward into the next setting.  
  1. Develop an Agenda. Ask yourself what is important for the receiving school to know about your child or teenager? This should be circulated in advance to school staff. 
  2. Use bullet points rather than a long narrative. 
  3. Share any evaluations
    • Discuss if any additional evaluations or data are needed
  4. Prioritize your concerns. Examples:
    • Social
    • Homework completion and organization
    • Life Skills
    • Independence
  5. Ask the school what their expectations are for your child/typical 9th grader.
  6. Gather information about the middle school or high school.  
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Apps for Divorcing Parents
         FAQ: Why use a co-parenting app?
It centralizes communication and helps with organization. Even for divorcing or divorced parents it has been my experience that the apps provide a less emotional vehicle for communication. Using an app can also limit the he said, she said phenomenon.

            FAQ: What can an app do to help with scheduling?
Most apps provide an ability to use a shared calendar and allow you to provide notice to the other parent in the event of a schedule change. I represent many families with children who have special needs. Often the scheduling complexities of outside therapies, doctor's visits are daunting to intact families. In divorced families, managing the scheduling is even more daunting. An app that gives a calendar and notifications regarding changes is essential and reduces the stress of constant communication.
              FAQ: My ex and I share expenses for our two children. Are there apps that track expenses?
Yes. Not all apps have an expense tracker, but most do. The list of common apps and their features is listed below.

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                  Special Needs Considerations in Divorce

  • Description of the special needs of the child - Every child is unique. Specifics matter.
  • The impact of the special needs on daily life of the family (describe in detail).
    • Employment
    • Caregiving
    • Travel
    • Special Living Accommodations (wheelchair, mobility issues)
    • Special Diet
    • Therapies
  • Outline of the costs for caring for the child each month. Itemize all costs.
    • Examples: 
      • Medication
      • Therapies
  • Who is the primary caregiver?
  • Who takes the child to doctor's appointments, outside therapists, attends school meetings?
  • Have the child's special needs impacted the earning capacity and career path of one or both of the parents?
  • What is the extent of each parent's involvement with the child?
  • Will the child live primarily with one parent following the divorce
  • What school district is considered the home district?

Micki Moran, J.D.
The Child & Family Law Center of the North Shore
A Division of Grund & Leavitt, P.C.
600 Central Avenue, Suite 248
Highland Park, IL 60035
Phone 312-640-0500
Fax 847-681-1295