Sample Individual IEP and Program Outline

7. Developing an IEP
· Develop the IEP with the Team
· Clearly Define DIR Goals as They Relate to Each Developmental Level
(see examples)
· Include Specific Strategies and Principles for Facilitating DIR Goals
· Clearly Define the Child's Schedule and Amount of Time Devoted to Specific Areas of the Program
· Define Sensory Processing Support Systems (include sensory breaks, in-class sensory support, multi-sensory teaching strategies, the use of visuals and gestures to support language, allowances for individual working styles such as standing at the desk instead of sitting etc.)
· Include all Locations Needed to Implement the Program (e.g., FT area, sensory support location, lunch bunch location, etc.)
· Clearly Identify the Involvement and Responsibility of Each Staff Member (including related services and specials teachers, Lunch Bunch staff, etc.)
· Clearly Define all Modifications and Supports to be used with the Child (e.g., breaking down tasks, visual supports, FM trainers, etc.)
· Cleary define all Materials Needed to Implement the Program (e.g., FT toys, sensory support equipment, etc.)
· Child is to Have Facilitated Peer Interactions (include Lunch Bunch, Recess, etc.)
· Identify the Structure and Frequency of Team Meetings and Communication Requirements
· Clearly Identify Training and Consultation Agreements (Including Frequency and Duration)

8.Working with, and Supporting, Staff
· Roll up Your Sleeves and Get Involved
· Demonstrate DIR Principles and the Facilitation of Goals Through Example
· Relieve Staff Anxieties by Acknowledging Your Own Challenges
· Help Staff Identify What Works and What Needs Improving
· Stay Positive/Identify Strengths
· Balance Critique with Praise
· Have Respect for the Existing Program, Policies and the Pace at Which Changes are Able to be Made
· Show Respect for the Individual Teaching Styles of Staff
· Respect the Pace at Which Different Individuals are able to Internalize the Approach and Feel Confident in Their Abilities (Sometimes resistance is a disguise for fear of failure)
· Work as a Team/Respect the Position of Head Staff


9. Evaluation of the Program/Data Collection
· Regular Team Meetings Should Address the Effectiveness of the Program and Progress of the Child
· Data may be Collected on a Daily, Weekly or Monthly Basis to Identify the Efficacy of the Program
· Regular Observations and Consultations in the Classroom by the DIR Consultant Should also be Used to Identify the Strengths and Weaknesses of the Program


10. A Work in Progress/Working out the Kinks/Changing the IEP
· Remember, this is a Work in Progress
· Build Your Program in Steps
· Meet Challenges with an Open Mind
· Make Changes to the Program and IEP as Needed
· Stay Creative and Positive
· Maintain Strong Alliances with the Team



Decker School
Recommendations by Monica G. Osgood

Joseph's current developmental needs: As per my previous assessments, it has been identified that Joseph is in critical need of intervention to fill in the developmental gaps that prohibit him from functioning at his maximum potential. Joseph currently displays significant deficits in his ability to regulate himself, stay engaged, be intentional and purposeful using his own ideas and language, and sustain problem solving interactions.

Rationale for proposed program: Joseph's home and school team are working together to meet the above needs. We are all also in agreement that this intervention needs to be intensified for next year. Taking time now to intensively target Joseph's developmental growth, will allow him to participate in less restrictive environments in the future. More support now, will hopefully equal less support later. Because there is not a developmentally-based program for children Joseph's age at the Decker school, it is proposed that an individual program be developed to meet his needs.

Proposed Program: The primary components of a successful program for Joseph next year include training for all staff on the Developmental Individual Relationship-based(DIR) intervention, ongoing supervision and support from a certified DIR consultant, a half day one-on-one program structured specifically to meet Joseph's individual developmental needs, a location and materials for this program, an individual to deliver this program, support at lunch and recess, and participation in an afternoon class with peers that is modified for Joseph as needed.

Training and support: All staff involved with Joseph(this includes Joseph's one-on-one, special education teacher, speech and OT therapists, lunch and recess supports, etc.) should receive training prior to the beginning of the program. This should include a three hour introduction to the theory and principles of DIR. This overview should include video examples of people implementing DIR with Joseph. If Joseph's one-on-one can be identified before the end of this year, that person will be offered the same position at the DIR summer camp Joseph will be attending for the month of July. This would be a wonderful way for this person to get extensive training in the approach. Once school starts, hands-on coaching by the DIR consultant should be consistent to support staff. This should be supplied no less than one full day every other week for the first three months. After three months, the need for ongoing training and supervision can be reassessed and possibly reduced. Staff working closely with Joseph should also be encouraged to attend as many DIR conferences and workshops as possible.

Program Outline:

Joseph's identified DIR goals should be targeted throughout the school day by all staff involved with Joseph.

AM(arrival to lunch)
Joseph should receive daily intensive one on one Developmental Individual Relationship-based(DIR) therapy.

A location designed to support Joseph's developmental and sensory needs should be established before the start of the program. This could be a small room or a portion of a larger room. However, it is important that this space be used exclusively for Joseph's DIR intervention in the mornings. This should not be someone's office available only at certain times. This should also be an area that allows for Joseph and his one-on-one to engage in highly motivating, high affect and sensory-based activities which can, at times, be loud and active. Therefore, a portion of a classroom where a teacher is trying to run a group lesson with other children is not sufficient.
Sensory integration equipment, developmental toys and critical thinking materials will need to be accessible at all times at this location. The specific materials needed for this program should be identified by Joseph's entire team and purchased prior to the start of the program.
This intensive morning intervention should be delivered by a personal aide or special education teacher formally trained in DIR.
o If this intervention is assigned to a personal aide, this aide must be supervised by Joseph's afternoon special education teacher and a DIR consultant.
This intervention should take place in Joseph's DIR room. However, the instructor may decide to do intervention in locations other than the DIR room when appropriate.
Typical peers should be incorporated into this morning intervention no less than two hours per week.
Joseph should not be isolated every morning for his intervention. The DIR consultant should closely monitor this aspect of the program to insure Joseph's processing abilities are being challenged and that he does not become too dependent on his one-on-one instructor(e.g., ignoring peers when present).
Joseph's morning sessions should be 1/3 Follow-the Child's Lead Floor Time, 1/3 Semi-Structured Floor Time and 1/3 Sensory Motor/Motor Planning work.

o Follow-the Child's Lead DIR: This time should be spent doing activities that Joseph chooses and enjoys. During these activities, Joseph's one-on-one will intensively target his developmental needs such as regulation, engagement and intentionality. During this portion of the day it is not the activities that are important, but the improvement in specific developmental areas.
o Semi-Structured DIR: This time should be used to target specific concepts including cognitive, language, social goals and academics. This will be the same high affect, motivating type of interactions used during the previous component. However, here the one-on-one will semi-structure activities to work on specific skills. For example, the therapist might use a plate of cookies to work on more and less, set up situations that elicit specific language goals, use visuals and social stories to help Joseph increase skills needed to be successful in the classroom, etc..
o Sensory Motor/Motor Planning: This work should include activities that challenge Joseph to "Think and Do" or pair actions and words with ideas. Exercises from the books Thinking goes to School by Furth and Wachs, Brain Gym, and other sensory motor programs may be used to support this portion of the program. Joseph should constantly be challenged to execute new ideas involving motor planning.

Support at lunch and recess: Joseph should continue to be included in a facilitated lunch group at least three times per week. This group should include 2-3 of Joseph's peers from his afternoon class. It should be held in a quiet location and facilitated by one of Joseph's team members. The activities done in these groups should encourage peer interactions and should be fun games, not lessons.

PM(Recess to dismissal)
Joseph should participation in an afternoon classroom with appropriate peers.

This classroom should be chosen based on it's ability to support Joseph's DIR program, the amount of activities that Joseph is able to participate in with minimal assistance and the availability of appropriate peers.
o This classroom should offer developmentally appropriate lessons(with modifications for Joseph as needed).
o This classroom should allow flexibility in Joseph's schedule supporting the goal that every minute of Joseph's day be productive. For example, if a language based lesson on the Civil War is not meaningful for him, Joseph will move to a modified lesson or individual DIR with his one-on-one(and peer when available).
o This classroom should have peers that are good role models for Joseph and will support his social development.
Joseph's on-on-one from the morning session should participate in this class as his support.
The teacher of this classroom should be trained in DIR as described above.
The teacher in this classroom should incorporate the principles of DIR into her interactions and instruction with Joseph. Joseph should learn to respond to the teacher as a member of his class. Special care should be taken to not allow Joseph to become too dependent on his aide.
The teacher and Joseph's one-on-one should work together to maximize Joseph's success in the classroom. This should include creating any supports and modifications needed for Joseph prior to each activity. For example, a story read about Abraham Lincoln might require simple visuals and key words to be established for Joseph so he can connect with the meaning of the story.
Joseph's teacher and one-on-one should communicate with each other daily about difficulties Joseph may experience in the classroom. This will allow for the two to create modifications and supports to target these difficulties. It will also alert the one-one-one of areas that can be worked on during Joseph's one-on-one semi-structured morning session.

Team Meetings: Everyone working with Joseph should work as an interdisciplinary team. This means, the parents and home program staff, Joseph's special education teacher, Joseph's one-on-one support, Speech and OT all communicate to support each other's interventions. It will be essential that this team communicate about strategies and progress related to Joseph's DIR goals and support them consistently. It would be highly beneficial to have a team meeting once a month that would include Joseph's mother and a member from Joseph's home program. This would be a time for both home and school staff to share goals and challenges to support each other.

Minimize transitions: There should be minimal fragmenting in Joseph's schedule to allow for long continuous flows of ideas. It takes Joseph a while to process information and it is not beneficial for him to jump from one activity to another. This means that related services, specials and transitions to different environments and activities be as minimal as possible.

Sensory support: Sensory components should be integrated into daily activities where appropriate to support Joseph's sensory needs. For example, Joseph's math worksheet maybe taped to the closet door while he discusses the math concepts with his teacher or aid. After they come up with each answer, Joseph will be required to walk, hop, etc. over to the door to write his answer. Other movement, pressure, tactile, etc. strategies may be obtained through collaboration with Joseph's occupational therapist. Although, Joseph receives this sensory support throughout the day in the classroom, it is not recommended that this replace his existing sensory diet and breaks. This additional support should continue.

Overall: Joseph's program should be designed and agreed upon by his entire team. The above recommendations are simply an outline to be filled in with details and specifics. In order to be successful, it is crucial that the entire participate in the program development, implementation and monitoring of efficacy. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.