Medical LakeSchool District

Skip to main content Search
STUDENT SERVICES » Parent and Family Partnership Program

Parent and Family Partnership Program

Parents and Family and Community Members are Invited to Partner with Us through the Special Education Parent and Family Partnership Program!

The Student Services department is launching a Special Education Parent and Family Partnership Program in the Spring of 2020. We are looking for parent volunteers committed to supporting our parents new to navigating the special education process. This is a new approach by the Medical Lake School District to assist parents and guardians of students with an IEP (Individual Education Plan) to navigate the IEP process, and to increase the communication opportunities between families and their schools. Parents expected to participate in the design and implementation of an IEP often find themselves at a loss. It may be their first IEP meeting or the introduction of a Transition Planning. We are looking for parents committed to supporting other parents as they navigate Special Education. They are not advocates, but rather partners and coaches along the way. This program connects trained and experienced Parent Partners with parents and/or guardians.

Who is a Parent and Family Partner?

Special Education Parent and Family  Partners are parents/community members who reside in the Medical Lake School District. They have personal experience navigating the special education system.
Our partners are volunteers who receive a minimum of 9 hours of training provided by the Medical Lake School District and Sound Options Group. This group is partially funded through OSPI to help increase effective communication between parents and the school district. 
Parent and Family Partners: What We Do and What We Don't

A Special Education Parent and Family Partner DOES:

· Work with parents/guardians at no cost to them.

· Provide an impartial listening ear.

· Ask questions to help the parent/guardian identify and clarify concerns.

· Explain and help parents/guardians to understand the IEP process and navigate the school system.

· May accompany the parent/guardian to an IEP meeting or another meeting related to their child’s special education services.

· Support and empower the parent/guardian as the advocate for their child.

· Maintain confidentiality of the family being served.


A Special Education Parent and Family Partner DOES NOT:

· Provide legal advice.

· Advocate or speak for the parent.



Current MLSD Parent and Family Partners


Nikki Bauman

Nikki Bauman

Contact Information: Email [email protected]


Shawn and Shauna Merritt


Interested or have questions? Please contact us!

Tawni Barlow, Student Services Director

email: [email protected]