Disability Is Natural Books and Media

The strongest principle of growth lies in human choice.

George Eliot

Goals: Meaningful and Relevant or Garbage?

We’re fanatics about goals! In Disability World, a person who receives government-funded services or benefits is also on the receiving end of goals for his life (whether he wants them or not). The laws governing services mandate the writing of goals—goals about physical abilities, behavior, academics, self-care, employment, and just about everything under the sun! Goals are written for little tiny babies (and their families), young children, school-aged children, and adults of all ages. The “I”—in IFSPs (Individualized Family Service Plans), IEPs (Individualized Education Programs), IHPs (Individualized Habilitation Programs), and other Plans and Programs—means the goals are to be individualized (not based on the diagnosis). And the individual (and/or the parents) whose life is being Planned or Programmed is supposed to be involved in the PP process (that’s what I like to call it).

In the Real World, having goals is a good thing. If the goal is a college education, a teenager’s high school courses will get him there. If the goal is a Hawaiian vacation, the family sets aside money for the trip. In the Real World, people create personal goals that are meaningful and relevant to them. The same is not always true (hardly ever, it seems) in Disability World. There, goals are often meaningless and irrelevant to the individual who is supposed to achieve them.​ Click here to continue.


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