"Discovering my daughter had a profound learning difference was extremely emotional and overwhelming. Navigating the IEP process, given her complex learning profile, was an even more daunting task. In order to avoid any conflict with the school and the exhaustion of potential resistance, I had taken a back seat by her freshman year of high school. I was under the assumption that her current IEP would meet all of her academic needs. Well, I was wrong, and after her first semester of freshman year, I realized that I needed to meet with the high school to request more services.
I was completely overwhelmed by all the data and reports that I had requested and collected. I didn’t know where to start and definitely did not feel confident doing it myself. I wanted to remain a mom and not have to become a self proclaimed educational specialist, special education attorney, educational advocate and/or a special education teacher. I was in desperate need of guidance and I am so thankful for having met Shira. She read through all of my daughter’s data and made sense of it for me. She helped me make a list of not only my daughter’s deficit areas and how best to address them, but also of her strengths and how she could use them to succeed.
Shira helped me organize my thoughts and draft letters to the high school as well as agendas for upcoming meetings. When I walked into that next meeting at the high school, I was well prepared and felt strong enough to ask for what my daughter deserved without feeling intimidated as I had in the past. Shira was easy to reach, extremely knowledgeable, well organized, empathetic, patient, yet persistent, and provided me with the encouragement I needed to get approval for the services my daughter needed. I cannot thank Shira enough for her assistance and dedication. I will continue to use her services as an educational advocate for my daughter as well as refer others to her." Katie B.
"I called Shira to help me get an IEP for our daughter. In 6th grade we were considering moving her to a new school and since she had been in private school, she didn’t have an IEP. Shira responded immediately and went through all of our evaluations. Within a week, she walked me, step by step, through our daughter’s strengths and weaknesses and remediation requirements. Additionally, she taught me how to communicate our expectations to the school and the district. I am so grateful for Shira’s help and would definitely recommend her to friends and family." Debbie W.
”I have been teaching in the general education setting for 17 years, and have had plenty of experience attending IEP meetings for my students over the years. However, being on the other side of the table for my son's IEP needs I felt as though I wasn't being heard.
After reaching out to Shira Schwartz about my concerns for my son's progress with his IEP goals, Shira called me back the next day and immediately put my concerns at ease. I was impressed with her compassion, understanding, expertise, and professionalism while talking me through my experience thus far. She thoroughly read through my son's documents, reports, and various paperwork that same day and put together a case that we could present at his IEP meeting the following day! She gave me hope, and quickly targeted the need for revisions on each of my son's goals in order to ensure more social-emotional and academic progress!
During his meeting, my husband and I couldn't be more impressed with her knowledge of the system and the language needed to reach the team's attention. She was well prepared, precise, and effective. Having Shira on our side to help advocate for our son gives us the confidence we need to pursue a successful future for him!” Kelly P.
“Shira is great at what she does. I contacted her when my daughter was struggling with executive function issues, and within a few short months, she got the school to write an IEP. This was against very high odds, as our district is notoriously “stingy” about granting accommodations.
I truly believe it was Shira’s tenacity, mastery of the subject matter and ability to bond with others that won over, and ultimately convinced, the team. I also feel that Shira advocated for my child like she would her own child, pushing aggressively for the most support possible. I am forever grateful to Shira and will continue to rely on her expertise as my daughter moves into high school.” Susan G.