School officials may be experts on education policy. But there is only one expert on a child: the parent. --Karen Simon
You have a special needs child who should be getting a much better education at your public school. The teachers and administrators seem knowledgeable and sincere, but the Special Education process seems overwhelming.
Or maybe you have just received an autism diagnosis for your child and don't know where to begin to secure services -- especially when time is of the essence. You have read about proven approaches like Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), but you don't know how to get it started.
Karen Simon faced those questions when her son Christopher, at age 2, was diagnosed with autism in the 1990s, at a time when autism resources were scarce. She quit her job as a corporate president in California, educated herself on how to best advocate for her own child, moved back to her home state of Connecticut, and went to work for her son.
Today, her son Christopher is a student at Fairfield University, and she continues the special education advocacy work she has done for more than 300 families in Connecticut and surrounding states.
You can e-mail or call Karen for a free telephone consultation (203-257-6520) to discuss the problems surrounding your child's education, and she will outline some of the options available.
- Sometimes parents simply need some help to better educate themselves on how to read an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) or what questions to ask at a Planning and Placement Team (PPT) meeting. This can be done in a consulting session outside of the PPT.
- Maybe you get intimidated or overly emotional at PPT meetings and you need Karen to speak, negotiate, and advocate on your behalf. Most of the time. that's all it takes.
- If school officials refuse to provide the services that your child is due under the law, Karen can present your case to a state mediator, which is usually enough to obtain the necessary services. If not, Karen will refer you to best attorneys in the state.
You need to know how to be a full participant in the PPT process and know your child's rights under the federal Individuals with Disability Education Act, or IDEA .
Karen has advocated for children with a variety of special needs, including those with Autism Spectrum Disorders, plus ADD/ADHD, Speech and Language Impairments, Learning Disabilities, and those with multiple issues.
Our range of services includes accompanying parents to PPT meetings and speaking on their behalf, drafting measurable IEP goals and objectives, monitoring progress, analyzing data, providing referrals to independent clinicians and evaluators, and assisting parents with dispute resolution, including writing state complaints and representing the family at mediation.
While Karen will customize a recommended program for the needs of your child, she has a special expertise in securing appropriate Applied Behavior Analysis services for children on the Autism Spectrum.
She will often negotiate for additional services outside of school including home based ABA therapy, summer services, behavior intervention plans, transition planning, social skills groups, and any needed speech, Occupational Therapy (OT) and Physical Therapy (PT) services. She is a source for many of the state's best clinicians in these areas.
To schedule a free telephone consultation, contact Karen:
203 257 6520