Danielle L., mother of two.
“As the parents of two special needs children, attending IEP meetings can be a daunting task without adding in unnecessary complications and misunderstandings. Janie Dickens alleviated much of our stress during the process when the situation became too difficult to handle alone. As a former educator, she is well respected and knows Wake County Public School policies first hand. She uses this experience to help parents traverse the often overwhelming process. When you feel that your child’s IEP has been violated, ignored, or misinterpreted, Janie Dickens is the most qualified individual to assist in this process.”
Linda G., mother of two
“Janie Dickens experience in education played a major role in school staff finally making an effort to understand my daughter’s neurological deficits. She was the perfect intermediary at IEP meetings because she asked direct questions about how teachers were addressing my daughter’s weaknesses and suggested innovative teaching techniques and behavioral coping strategies which were fitting for my daughter and easy for teachers to implement. She succinctly conveyed my concerns and was persistent in requiring school staff to provide my daughter’s present levels of performance, work samples and compliance to the IEP. Engaging Janie Dickens as my daughter’s education advocate to help me navigate the mind-field of special education was the best decision I ever made.”
Beth R., mother of one
“I am a mom of a kid with Aspergers. Noah benefits from small class sizes and goes to Southern Wake Academy(SWA) in FV/HS and it’s been a good thing for him, although, there is still not a ton of understanding on the Autism front by some of the teachers (which is maddening)…but they continue to work on it.
“Noah is extremely smart, talented (you may have seen him at Chick-fil-a performing magic on family nights and cow appreciation days), outgoing and kind hearted…but in a school setting, is often misunderstood.
“One thing that has helped him is Janie Dickens who has done a lot of work with helping me with IEP support. If for any reason you guys would need her support in this area, she is a GREAT advocate.
“Mainly because she has been on both sides of the table. She is a momma with 2 kids with complex issues, AND she was a teacher for a lifetime, AND she has her own business helping us with IEP and school issues that we run across so often with our kids.
“I knew I made the right decision to hire her when, at the end of an IEP meeting, the special education teacher looked at her and said, ‘Wow, could you come to ALL my IEP meetings? You were such a huge help!’”
“Janie was the advocate for one of my students several years ago. I was a veteran teacher, but had never encountered a student with quite the same combination of issues. I tried my best to meet this student’s needs but I needed more support.
“Initially I felt uncomfortable with the idea that the parents were retaining an advocate but Janie was incredibly helpful. She facilitated better communication between me and the parents and we were able to develop real-world solutions for the student. By the end of the school year, I was able to complete the referral process and we sent the student to middle school with a meaningful IEP. Without Janie’s help, the year would not have been nearly as successful.”