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We are delighted to share these interesting insights from long-time PEAK colleague Emma Van der Klift. When we first read the title, we wondered exactly how much hostage negotiators and parents/advocates really could have in common. But, in fact many of the skill sets are very much the same! Respect, listening, and relationship building are skills parents need to work successfully with school IEP teams. We hope you enjoy this great read, and that it makes you think of waysRead more

Ask A Parent Advisor: Preparing for IEP Meetings

Question: "I always prepare to be positive and put my best foot forward before my child's IEP meetings, but as soon as I walk in I feel overwhelmed. The meetings tend to begin with what's wrong and what's not working, and I immediately feel the need to be defensive. Do you have any suggestions on ways I can prepare for my child's IEP meeting and also tips for being positive during the IEP meeting?" Answer: Preparing for an IEP meetingRead more

Effective Communication – It's Key!

As we approach situations when we need to advocate, it's important to consider strategies that will help to make things as successful and smooth as possible for all parties involved. Communication is essential and effective communication, like any skill, takes practice. Here are the key components of effective communication skills, taken from Marshall Rosenberg's book, Non-Violent Communication. Be a Good Listener Don't plan your response while the other person is talking. Instead, focus your attention on trying to understand theRead more