Routine dialogue about learning and teaching, between parents, learners and professionals is the key to successful personal learning planning.
For children and young people with additional support needs some additional measures may need to be included within any annual cycle. In particular where an IEP is being used to plan for learning there should be, as a minimum, an annual review to consider both success and next steps for longer term targets. The head teacher is responsible for ensuring that reviews are carried out and he or she may choose to chair the meeting. It is also appropriate for this task to be delegated to another school staff member, or other member of the professional team involved in supporting the pupil.
Ideally dates for annual reviews should be set at previous review meetings. Professionals invited to attend should acknowledge receipt of the invitation and indicate whether or not they can attend. If they are working with the child and cannot attend the meeting they should provide a written report with suggested long and short term targets for the next term clearly indicated.
More frequent or termly meetings, to review work on individual aspects of an IEP may also feature and the outcomes of these would support the annual review process. Prior to an annual review a member of staff such as key worker for pre-school children, support for learning teacher or class teacher for school age children, co-ordinator for children with a co-ordinated support plan, should meet with the child’s parents or young person and their parents as appropriate for a pre-meeting to go over the information and issues that will be formally included in the review.
Review meetings should be solution focused, see the section on Solution Oriented Schools for more information, and can be characterised in the following way:
- General sharing of information between professionals and parents, indicating the progress that has been made since the last review meeting, the skills and competencies of the child or young person and any information about reviews, assessments and observations that have been undertaken by those working with the child or young person.
- From the information shared, all possible issues that may need to be addressed to support the educational development and progress of the child or young person in its broadest sense should be explored.
- From this exploration, agreed and prioritised long term targets should be drawn.
- For each long term target the ‘steps’ to overtake the target should be identified.
- At this point an appropriate number of targets relevant to the child or young person, parent and professional group should be drawn together to form the basis of the new or reviewed IEP, remembering that only agreed action points that are over and above what would normally be provided in class or school will, by definition, be relevant to an IEP.
- After the meeting, the paperwork for the IEP is completed by relevant school staff. The agreed short term targets should be expressed as SMART targets and copies of the IEP sent to everyone involved.