- Become active in the school's Parent-Teacher Association (PTA), Special Education Parent Advisory Council (SPED PAC), or other school organizations and events. Join the statewide SPED PAC listserv on the Internet. Contact your local public school Administrator of Special Education, call the Massachusetts Association of Special Education Parent Advisory Councils (MASSPAC) at 617-962-4558 to learn more. Your local SPED PAC may have a listserv that you can join too.
- Visit or talk to your child's teacher(s) and principal often. Set up regular times to talk with the teacher and principal (by phone or email, if not in person). If needed, use a communication notebook that stays goes back and forth from home to school. You and your child's teacher can keep in touch by writing down important information on the notebook.
- Offer to give a training session to the school nurse and other school staff about your child's special needs. This will give you a chance to answer questions about your child's care needs, procedures, medication and/or equipment
- Help organize a Disability Awareness Training at your child's school. This is a way to provide some education for other children, teachers, and parents. Encourage the school to buy special picture books, dolls, puzzles, and toys to keep in your child's classroom to teach students about disability issues. Learn about Disability Awareness at the MASSPAC website.
- Ask your child's teachers to suggest activities to do at home that will support and strengthen your child's progress at school
- Volunteer as a "classroom parent."
Adapted from Working Toward a Balance in Our Lives: A Booklet for Families of Children with Disabilities and Special Health Care Needs. Project School Care, Children's Hospital . Boston: Harvard University, Office of the University Publisher, 1992.
This information is provided by the Division for Children & Youth with Special Health Needs within the Department of Public Health.