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Joni Jones,  "" Autism Consultant and the Founder Of Autism Resources. TOPIC: "Preparing for an IEP".

Tuesday,  August 26th at 9 p.m. (Eastern), Note portions of the text have been edited for spelling and grammatical errors, while other text with errors was left in tact in the context of the chat.

Rebecca {public msg} Hello and Welcome to our talkAutism Specialty Chat. If you have a question for our Host Speaker, "Joni Jones, Autism Consultant and the Founder Of Autism Resources. TOPIC: "Preparing for an IEP". Just type a “?” in the room. The names will be taken in order received. Hold your questions until you are cued by the Moderator. Also, Please keep chit chat down to a minimal, unless ok'd by the Host. Thank You and enjoy your stay!
Mommy_O {public msg} hi there!
Mommy_O {public msg} it's iep review time around our house.
Moderator {public msg} hi
Ron {enters}
Rebecca {public msg} Hi there Ron!
Moderator {public msg} hi Ron
Joni Jones {public msg} Hi Ron
Ron {public msg} hey there everybody.
Rebecca {public msg} Five minutes for late comers?
Ron {public msg} hi Joni, thanks for sharing your experience with us tonight.
Ron {public msg} maybe just a few minutes.
Joni Jones {public msg} no problem here glad to be here Ron.
Rebecca {public msg} ok
Rebecca {public msg} I have Joni's intro, at her request. I will post it when you are ready to begin.
Ron {public msg} let's hold off a minute.
Rebecca {public msg} That is fine by me ;)
Ron {public msg} how was the Yankee game last week Joni?
Joni Jones {public msg} It was fabulous.
Ron {public msg} good turnout by the autism community?
Joni Jones {public msg} Check out ASA website.
Ron {public msg} ok
Joni Jones {public msg} sold 3 hundred tickets.
Ron {public msg} wow!
Joni Jones {public msg} sold 750 at BlueClaws
Ron {public msg} great!
Ron {public msg} even with so so weather that day.
Rebecca {public msg} that's great!
Joni Jones {public msg} the tickets were sold before the game many didn't come.
Joni Jones {public msg} last year all 750 came as you know.
Ron {public msg} great write up about Adam on the ASA web site.
Joni Jones {public msg} they are so good to our community.
Joni Jones {public msg} had autistic adult sing from the field.
Joni Jones {public msg} it was his chance of a lifetime.
Rebecca {public msg} awww fantastic!
Ron {public msg} great.
Rebecca {public msg} I don’t think I could get up there and sing, id choke.
Rebecca {action} smiles.
Ron {public msg} hehe
Joni Jones {public msg} if I sang the crowd would leave.
Rebecca {public msg} lol Joni!!
Ron {public msg} I'm sure not!
Joni Jones {public msg} I am.
Rebecca {action} smiles.
Ron {public msg} well, looks like a tight nit group, maybe we should get started.
Joni Jones {public msg} fine here.
Rebecca {public msg} ok
Rebecca {public msg} Introduction for Joni: Hi. My name is Joni Jones and I am an Autism Consultant. I am also the mother of two children on the autism spectrum; Adam age 6 with Autism and Jeffrey age 9 with Aspergers Syndrome. Both have been successfully mainstreamed. My goal as a consultant, is to educate caregivers and professionals in the successful management of autism spectrum disorders and help develop Individual Educational Plans that will provide opportunity for them to reach their optimal potential in life.
Rebecca {public msg} The Goal of an IEP meeting should be to write an appropriate plan of care for the classified individual. Many Times the child study team (CST) and the caregiver needs assistance in this area . Sometimes as we all know, political influences can interfere. This is when an Autism Consultant can become very valuable.
Rebecca {public msg} If anyone has a question please post a "?" in the room ;)
Mommy_O {public msg} ?
Rebecca {public msg} Go ahead Mommy.
Mommy_O {public msg} How can we get our district to allow a new type of educational approach that has not been proven yet applied?
DebbieP {public msg} ?
Joni Jones {public msg} first you need to establish its success with your individual child.
Joni Jones {public msg} this can be done by taking data from a home component.
Mommy_O {public msg} Should I show them myself, working with him?
Joni Jones {public msg} its best to take data and show the data.
Mommy_O {public msg} I can keep data by showing them the work that was performed, but it is not repetitive, or in trials like aba.
Joni Jones {public msg} legally if you can show that there program is inappropriate you have more of a chance.
Mommy_O {public msg} It is a new classroom in our public school middle school.
Joni Jones {public msg} data does not have to be done in a discrete trial format.
Mommy_O {public msg} They don't really have a track record yet.
Joni Jones {public msg} need more information on what there plan is compared to your plan.
Mommy_O {public msg} I plan on using video tapes of him working.
Mommy_O {public msg} I am not sure were they are going yet.
Joni Jones {public msg} if your child has not made progress in their program the chances are better.
Mommy_O {public msg} teacher is just getting acquainted with the class.
Joni Jones {public msg} its not enough information.
Mommy_O {public msg} I guess I don't have the right info at this time.
Mommy_O {public msg} thanks.
Ron {public msg} ?
Joni Jones {public msg} you can call an IEP meeting at any time.
Joni Jones {public msg} tracking the progress of him in the class is crucial.
Joni Jones {public msg} this is when an autism consultant can evaluate this school and home component and give a written report.
Mommy_O {public msg} I believe that this new educational treatment would work better.
Mommy_O {public msg} than aba, which I know they will be using.
Mommy_O {public msg} in his last school he made no progress for 2 years.
Mommy_O {public msg} Using aba
Joni Jones {public msg} they don't respect parents in a court of law should that happen like they do the experts.
Joni Jones {public msg} it needs to be appropriate not most appropriate if he made no progress in 2 years it is simply inappropriate.
Andrew {action} nods solemnly.
Mommy_O {public msg} I am hoping not to go to court, I just was curious if you had any advice on a positive way to handle it.
Joni Jones {public msg} once you prove a program to be inappropriate you can show your program and its effectiveness.
Joni Jones {public msg} you must always prepare for court but hope you don't.
Joni Jones {public msg} you can not turn back the clock.
Mommy_O {public msg} We were in the process of suing our district years ago.
Mommy_O {public msg} It is not a pretty site.
Mommy_O {public msg} but I have no fears to do it again if necessary.
Mommy_O {public msg} thanks for the advice.
Joni Jones {public msg} an autism consultant can help by pointing out the inappropriateness of one program and effectiveness of another.
Joni Jones {public msg} in court everything is in the preparation.
Moderator {public msg} how do you find a consultant?
Joni Jones {public msg} many don't come prepared with enough experts.
Joni Jones {public msg} I am an autism consultant and consult all over the country an autism resource center can help with referrals.
Moderator {public msg} ty
Moderator {public msg} Debbie you have a question?
Joni Jones {public msg} Psychologists and educational consultants also try to fit in this role.
DebbieP {public msg} Any recommendations as to who should be on the first ever sst meeting we've had? I understand that my husband and I, the SSP coordinator for the school, special resources person, speech therapist, school psychologist, son's teacher and others will be there.
Joni Jones {public msg} many times the entire CST team is not there so don't let that surprise you.
Joni Jones {public msg} you can request in advance to have the entire child study team present.
Joni Jones {public msg} Psychologists, educational consultants, speech therapist, ot, regular ed teacher and someone who can commit to district funding.
Joni Jones {public msg} you want to bring someone on your team.
DebbieP {public msg} I'll do that. Just wondering if I should have a friend who is a psychologist, there. How would I find someone who can commit to district funding...who are they?
Joni Jones {public msg} this can be therapists, early intervention team, Psychologists, etc.
Joni Jones {public msg} usually it is the director of special services or someone in administration who can commit to funding.
Joni Jones {public msg} from the district.
Joni Jones {public msg} make sure the classification matches the disability.
Joni Jones {public msg} this is a big oversight
Joni Jones {public msg} under age 5 they classify developmentally delayed but.
Joni Jones {public msg} you need to add the specifics examples.
Joni Jones {public msg} communication impaired, socially impaired, language impaired, sensory impaired, if you have an autism diagnosis use it.
Joni Jones {public msg} it will provide opportunity for more services.
Joni Jones {public msg} make sure evaluations are done before the IEP meeting.
Joni Jones {public msg} if you do not agree with an evaluation request an independent evaluation or bring your own.
DebbieP {public msg} Jonnie is age 7, diagnosed by Amen Clinic with 4 of 8 aspergers traits, NLD, OC disorder and hyper-focused ADD. He was the brightest kid in his class in reading and math, but can't tie his shoes or play basketball. So I'm a little confused about classification.
Joni Jones {public msg} view several placements before your first meeting.
Joni Jones {public msg} if he has an autism classification this will more likely entitle him to ot, speech, pt, home therapy, and or a para professional.
DebbieP {public msg} what do you mean by several placements?
Joni Jones {public msg} aspergers usually fall through the cracks if you do not have a consultant educating the team.
Joni Jones {public msg} for instance your child may need a small classroom size and typical peer interactions.
DebbieP {public msg} So, I would be wise to find out if anyone on the team has any expertise on Aspergers and if not, bring the best local expert(s) or consultant I can find?
Joni Jones {public msg} if the district cannot provide this you might consider another placement.
Joni Jones {public msg} many CST members are not familiar with aspergers.
DebbieP {public msg} What do you mean by another placement...I don't understand the term placement.
Joni Jones {public msg} if a child has a skill and does not generalize that skill it is not functional.
Joni Jones {public msg} to an untrained eye they will say the asperger individual possesses the skill.
Joni Jones {public msg} placement refers to different school opportunities.
Joni Jones {public msg} autistic individuals do require a home component for generalization of skills into the community and parent training to ensure engagement.
DebbieP {public msg} I have had great relationships with his K and 1st teachers, and school. I'm willing to help in the education process because it's a SUPER school. I don't know any professionals who have understood Aspergers, including the school.
Joni Jones {public msg} This is very common.
Joni Jones {public msg} It has nothing to do with the child study team being good people or having a great relationship.
Joni Jones {public msg} We need to develop appropriate programs as it applies to the disability.
Joni Jones {public msg} Higher functioning.
DebbieP {public msg} I understand that, and I also know that commitment and willingness are very helpful traits in those whose help you seek!
Joni Jones {public msg} that is very true.
Joni Jones {public msg} if that’s the case you should have no problem developing an appropriate plan of care when you bring in your experts.
Moderator {public msg} Ron you have a question.
Ron {public msg} What can an IEP / autism consultant do additionally to help a family prepare for an upcoming IEP meeting? What are the costs? Can this be covered by anyone other than the family?
Ron {public msg} I've been kind of storing them up... :)
Rebecca {action} smiles.
Joni Jones {public msg} "Higher functioning" individuals usually fall through the cracks there is no perfect placement.
Joni Jones {public msg} Yes.
DebbieP {public msg} Thanks, you've provided me with some very helpful ways to communicate about Aspergers. Guess I should also say it's an Autism spectrum disorder to get maximum help. Thanks again.
Cyn {enters}
Joni Jones {public msg} In fact I was hired by a school district today on a particular child
Rebecca {public msg} hello Cyn
Joni Jones {public msg} my rates are 50$ an hour some vary higher.
Cyn {public msg} hi everyone.
Ron {public msg} what is the school district hoping you can do?
Joni Jones {public msg} an autism consultant can educate the family on what the child’s needs are.
Joni Jones {public msg} they can help them advocate those needs.
Ron {public msg} help tap into references , for example, that support a family's position?
Joni Jones {public msg} to give assistance in writing an appropriate IEP and ensure its implementation.
Joni Jones {public msg} I have a history and they know I offer objectivity as to what is appropriate.
Ron {public msg} important. how does one find the right consultant?
Ron {public msg} what does one check for?
Joni Jones {public msg} Sometimes a family doesn't know what an appropriate placement is.
Joni Jones {public msg} they work off emotions and take away supports to soon.
Joni Jones {public msg} to many go to inclusion just to be able to say there child is mainstreamed.
Ron {public msg} that's true. we had an experienced parent in with us, at one of our son's early iep meetings, and it set such a different tone to boot.
Joni Jones {public msg} inclusion must be done very specifically in order to be successful.
Joni Jones {public msg} I've seen an entire year go by just because the mom wanted inclusion.
Joni Jones {public msg} the supports were not effective.
Joni Jones {public msg} this is why it is important to request monthly meetings on the IEP and keep a communication book.
Ron {public msg} how does a consultant cut thru the chase in this 'inclusion ' dilemma?
Joni Jones {public msg} parents must view classrooms and have professionals with experience evaluate the placement.
Joni Jones {public msg} usually by having a reward token system paraprofessional, home therapy, and follow up meetings.
Ron {public msg} I've seen some other consultants' rate. To me, your fees seem to be more a labor of love :)
Joni Jones {public msg} if you educate the parents they are more receptive to your suggestions.
Ron {public msg} i agree. thanks for your comments, Joni.
Joni Jones {public msg} Ron, you know who I am and you know where I come from
Rebecca {action: Joni Jones} applauds Joni Jones fervently.
Moderator {action} . o O ( does anyone have a question for Joni? )
Rebecca {action} smiles.
Ron {public msg} I do, thanks for all you do.
Joni Jones {public msg} I am a parent and I am also a professional.
Joni Jones {public msg} I have some tips if there are no more questions.
Rebecca {public msg} Sure Joni...
Rebecca {public msg} go ahead.
Ron {public msg} please.
Moderator {public msg} joni we did have one lady who wanted to know what the first signs of autism is?
Joni Jones {public msg} First as I said before make sure the classification matches the disability.
Joni Jones {public msg} There are many signs this can range from no eye contact, hand flapping, tip toe walking, no communication skills reflux, inappropriate laughter, rages, no response to pain, isolation, etc.
Joni Jones {public msg} she can go to or the asa website.
Joni Jones {public msg} If you have an autism diagnosis use it.
Moderator {action} . o O ( wow )
Moderator {public msg} thanks
Joni Jones {public msg} Many times ot services do not address sensory integration dysfunction.
Moderator {public msg} I will tell her..this child is 2, is that too young to truly know?
Joni Jones {public msg} A sensory program should be used both in the home and at school.
Joni Jones {public msg} Absolutely not we are making diagnosis much earlier.
Rebecca {public msg} wow
Moderator {public msg} Ok that was her concern.
Rebecca {public msg} Before age 2?
Joni Jones {public msg} The key for success in autism is intensity and consistency this must be done both at home and at school.
Joni Jones {public msg} Yes before age 2.
Joni Jones {public msg} Speech therapy is another issue.
Joni Jones {public msg} So many times I see kids go from individual speech to group.
Joni Jones {public msg} Some stay on a one to one much to long.
Joni Jones {public msg} This is a social disability they need one to two ratio.
Joni Jones {public msg} This allows them not to get lost in a group.
Moderator {public msg} I will tell her...thank you.
Joni Jones {public msg} They need opportunity to sit in close proximity to another child.
Joni Jones {public msg} they need to wait, share, take turns, eye contact, observe on task.
Joni Jones {public msg} Sometimes rewards have to come quickly because they are not motivated by the same things typical peers.
Joni Jones {public msg} Pragmatics and social skills must be focused on.
Joni Jones {public msg} In older individuals there are speech evaluations to assess the difference between learn skills and skills that are generalized.
Joni Jones {public msg} It is very important to make sure monthly follow-up meetings are scheduled this is how you avoid losing valuable time in revising programs and setting appropriate goals.
Joni Jones {public msg} Home programming many times can be justified because of the diagnosis.
Joni Jones {public msg} There is a need to generalize skills from one setting to another and function in the community.
Nikanz {enters}
Joni Jones {public msg} Also if your child is in a self contained classroom this gives opportunity to provide interaction with typical peers in the community.
Joni Jones {public msg} Parent training is vital.
Ron {public msg} amen
Rebecca {public msg} Hi there nik.
Joni Jones {public msg} this should be addressed at the IEP meeting.
Nikanz {public msg} hello.
Ron {public msg} Hello, we're just finishing up here.
Moderator {public msg} Thank you Joni for joining us this is hard to believe the hour is up.
Joni Jones {public msg} When you request monthly meetings this is the time you can request an educational consultant be paid for by the district.
Joni Jones {public msg} Both to evaluate the classroom, the deliverance, and revise goals as needed.
Nikanz {public msg} I am a old timer at this.
Joni Jones {public msg} Thanks Ron for inviting me here tonight.
Moderator {public msg} I hope Joni that he invites you again...this is a topic allot of parents need to know about.
Ron {public msg} Thank you Joni, for offering very helpful guidance on an important issue to all of us.
Joni Jones {public msg} Here if you need me.
Ron {public msg} We'll archive this transcript, and have it available in the next several weeks.
Nikanz {public msg} Remember you are the parent and you do have the power to say No to things you don't like.
Ron {public msg} Stay well, and enjoy the rest of the summer!!!
Rebecca {action} Should have it up before the mid Sept.
Joni Jones {public msg} one more thing.
Ron {public msg} You're right Nikanz.
Ron {public msg} What's that?
Joni Jones {public msg} Never ever sign the IEP at the meeting.
Nikanz {public msg} That’s right
Joni Joni Jones {public msg} Take it home review it.
Ron {public msg} i heard that before, that's good advice.
Nikanz {public msg} yeap.
Joni Jones {public msg} Ask assistance from your state organization if necessary.
Joni Jones {public msg} Tape all IEP meetings.
Joni Jones {public msg} Take my word on that.
Nikanz {public msg} Have said No to quite a few things over the years and the teachers hate it.
Rebecca {public msg} Thank you Joni.
Moderator {action} . o O ( Also helps to become friends with the school nurse, they are more help then you can ever imagine. )
Joni Jones {public msg} A child study team will love you if you agree to everything.
Joni Jones {public msg} You really know your support when you disagree.
Ron {public msg} Got to run, thanks again Joni, and our great Moderator.
Moderator {public msg} ty
Rebecca {public msg} G'night Ron.
Joni Jones {public msg} Your quite Welcome.
Ron {leaves}
Rebecca {public msg} Joni we would love to have you back soon!
Nikanz {public msg} I am a old time when it comes to IEP's etc one learns along the way.
Rebecca {public msg} Contact Ron anytime! Joni Jones {public msg} Thank you anytime.
Moderator {public msg} Have a great evening all.
Rebecca {public msg} g'night everyone.
Joni Jones {public msg} Go to
Nikanz {public msg} As is my case have a good afternoon.
Joni Jones {leaves}

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