Is It Really Easy?
Easy IEP, developed by Woody Farely, John Deigham, Tom Farley and Tim Wolf,
Starting from Scratch
Thankfully, because we have been using the program for at least three years, by the time we receive students in our high school, some of the data has already been completed and updated by the student’s former teachers in our county. When we first began using the program, however, we had the difficult task of completing all of the data boxes in the program for each student. I believe that the most challenging part of using Easy IEP was entering psychological information, gathered from the students’ psychological examinations. We had to read the psychological reports and input test scores and narratives for each test the student completed. The good news is that once the information is there, it does not have to be retyped, only updated. We now only of to input an entire IEP at the high school level in Easy IEP when the student is new to our county.
Experienced teachers will adapt to Easy IEP a little easier because they are familiar with the components of an IEP. The program may seem a little confusing to new teachers who will have to learn about the parts of an IEP in addition to learning how to use the program. Error messages will appear in Easy IEP if the IEP is not completed fully or correctly. The IEP will not be able to be finalized and would stay in a draft form (with a draft watermark when printed). In my county, only the lead teacher can finalize IEPs. After three years of working with the program, it takes me about two hours to complete an IEP that only needs to be updated. In my county, there are constantly additions and changes to program and how we are to input the information. Compared to using paper forms, though, I would rather use Easy IEP. It’s certainly simpler to read a typed IEP, and the program is convenient to use. It is possible to access the program at home. Is it easy to use? Sometimes it’s easy. Sometimes it can be frustrating to entire the information just right so that error messages don’t appear. There have been glitches in which information that was entered did not save. I remember at one point in our county, we had to make sure that all drafts were finalized to avoid losing the IEP. All in all, I would take Easy IEP over using the old paper forms and carbon copies any day.