IEP facilitation is an optional dispute resolution process where an impartial facilitator assists the IEP team with communication and problem solving. Using facilitation as an early dispute resolution option keeps control of the decisions in the hands of the parties who know the student the best.
Facilitators help with the IEP process by keeping the meeting focused, helping ensure everyone’s voice is heard and keeping the meeting moving forward. The facilitator is not part of the IEP team and will not give advice or make decisions.
Facilitators are not investigating the school district and are not there to enforce special education law. The school district is still responsible for determining that the IEP meeting is conducted in accordance with federal and state law and that all appropriate forms are completed.
If parents or school districts have concerns regarding the child’s IEP, the parties may request assistance of an OPI IEP facilitator. Both parties must provide written consent to the use of a facilitator. An IEP Facilitator Request form may be obtained by contacting the OPI Legal Division at (406) 444-3172.
The cost of the facilitator is covered by OPI.