Is it legal to reference a student by name in your lesson plans when referring to IEP modifications being used?I co-teach in a high school where my supervisor is requiring me to reference my...

Is it legal to reference a student by name in your lesson plans when referring to IEP modifications being used?

I co-teach in a high school where my supervisor is requiring me to reference my students by name with their modifications in my lesson plans.  I have reservations about doing this, wondering if it doesn't violate confidentiality.

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akannan's profile pic

Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

I think that you probably want to seek the advice of an administrator on this one.  You might even want to bring it to their attention as a legal issue.  This usually brings quick responses to the matter.  In the end, student confidentiality is the most vital element.  I would think that publishing any student's name in a lesson plan is probably not in very good taste.  If the mention is passing such as, "Have Susie collect lunch tickets" or "Ask Johnny to take the attendance downstairs," that is not violating confidentiality.  Yet, it seems to me that a lesson plan is meant to be about the content and how instruction is going to proceed.  Individual students and their names are not needed in this process.  For modifications that are being used, I think that you can indicate this without writing it.  Perhaps, for you to speak to the student beforehand or ensure that the student's case worker is present would be one way where you would not need to indicate anything other than that there will be some student modifications as per IEP present in the lesson plan.  The lesson plan does not need to identify anything in a student's learning that would violate confidentiality.  If you are being compelled to do anything like this, I think that alerting an administrator to this situation might be in yours and the child's interests.

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shonika132's profile pic

shonika132 | Elementary School Teacher | eNotes Newbie

Posted on

Yes, putting a students name that has an IEP in a lesson plan violates their privacy. A good option is to use a different or pseudo name. Even using initials would possibly allow the students identity to possibly be revealed. If your principal needs proof that lessons are being differentiated for these students you may use initials but he must be listed on the access to records or signature page as a person that implements or makes sure the iep carried out.

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