But on to what I am here to talk about ... in the process of trying to crack the doors of a private school for learning disabilities, I happened to learn a couple of things I thought some of you might find interesting.
So here goes ....
- Unlike the former system of a student having to be on an IPP before they could access tuition support funding, the program now calls for them to be on an IPP, to have been on an IPP or to be "working towards an IPP"; and
- For a parent considering appealing an IPP, the regulations use to provide that only "outcomes" or "placement" could be appealed. BUT NOW IT'S POSSIBLE FOR A PARENT TO APPEAL THE FACT THAT A CHILD DOES NOT HAVE AN IPP ... in other words, that the school refuses to put the child on an IPP. [For those wondering, this is based on a change to s. 53(3) of the Ministerial Regulations made under the Education Act]
With regard to the first, remember that it doesn't have to be an academic IPP. It could just as easily be a social IPP that the student is "working towards".
And with regard to the latter, I have spoken with many parents over the years whose children were refused IPPs and who were effectively left with no recourse other than the possibility of a costly law suit. Not so any more.
As a final thought, if one were inclined to put these changes together- if a parent was anxious to access one of the private schools for a student without an IPP, there are now two possible routes around that obstacle - convene a meeting of your child's program planning team and see if they are willing to work towards an IPP (social or academic) for the child or, if the school is uncooperative in that regard, appeal the school's refusal to provide an IPP.
I'm not suggesing for one minute that going through that latter appeal process would be either an easy or fun experience (it generally being recoginzed that you are almost guaranteed to lose any such appeal at the school board level) but it does potentially open a door that, up until now, didn't even exist.
And that has to be a good thing, right?