Present Level of Academic Achievement and Functional Performance
Dan is a fourth grader who has a good sense of humor and is accepted by his peers. Dan can
successfully participate in the fourth grade math curriculum without special education support. He
does well in general education science and social studies, but needs help with independent reading
and writing assignments. Dan experiences success when provided with an assignment notebook,
reading of tests, reading support for long text passages assigned to be completed independently
within a short time period, and assistance from a peer or teacher for written assignments.
Dan has difficulty with reading. He can identify most letters and letter combinations in isolation, but
struggles to apply decoding strategies to unfamiliar words when reading text. This affects his oral
reading rate, which is slow and labored. Dan cannot independently read textbooks used in his 4th
grade classes. Dan accurately reads and comprehends 95 words per minute given graded passages at
the second grade level; his independent reading level. His fluency in 4th grade passages is poor. He
averages 55 words read correctly per minute with less than 75% comprehension. Students in 4th
grade are expected to read passages with 90-100% comprehension at the rate of 120-150 words per
minute. Dan demonstrates good listening comprehension. He understands academic content at grade
level following large and small group instruction, and when text is read to him by a peer, staff, or
computer based text reader. He is able to report facts and make inferences from listening at a level
expected of students in his grade.
Dan also has difficulty with writing and following complex oral and written directions. When he
doesn’t understand what to do in class, he generally picks up on cues from peers around him. Dan
can successfully follow 1 and 2-step directions without support. However, when instructions are
more complex, he sometimes needs help. This makes it hard for him to follow classroom activities
and assignments. His written work contains many spelling errors, lacks necessary punctuation, and
his sentences are generally short, 3-5 words in length. He cannot yet write a paragraph without
assistance. He does respond well to peer or teacher pre-writing and editing assistance and is
beginning to learn to use computer based spell-checking and editing software.
Dan’s parents are concerned about his reading and writing skills and feel he needs help in these
areas. They also notice his difficulty in following directions. They are happy with his grades in math
and his comments that he has friends in school.
Source: Wright, Arlene and Laffin, Kathy (2001). A Guide for Writing IEPs. Wisconsin Department of Public
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