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IEP guidelines

Mehemea ka moemoeā ahau, ko ahau anake.
Mehemea ka moemoeā a tātou, ka taea e tātou.
If I dream, I dream alone.
If we all dream together, we can succeed.

Te Kirihaehae Te Puea Hērangi
(1883–1952), Maori leader

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With thanks

The Ministry of Education thanks everybody who contributed to the revision of the Ministry of Education Individual Education Programme (IEP) Guidelines (1998).

In particular, the Ministry would like to thank the sector advisory group: Tinirau Barlow, Anne Best, Donna Boniface, Erin Cairns, Jann Carvell, Jane Chapman, Sally Direen, Sonia Glogowski, Rose Hague, Julie John, David Kennedy, Gary McClintock, Missy Morton, Tom Parsons, Judith Shearer, and Christine Zander, whose advice and guidance have been invaluable.

This resource is for anyone involved in developing or implementing individual education plans (IEPs) to support students with special education needs.

The audience includes:

  • students
  • their parents/caregivers and members of their whānau, hapū, iwi, or other communities
  • school staff, including teachers, teacher aides, and school leaders
  • specialists.

Māori-medium schools might adopt pathways different from those suggested in this resource, in accordance with their kaupapa. “Cultural differences in the perception of special needs” may be a factor (Bevan-Brown, 2001, page 6). However, many of the principles, especially that of collaboration, are likely to be relevant. Suggestions for collaborating with Māori communities are included in section 8.


Collaboration for Success: Individual Education Plans replaces the 1998 Individual Education Programme (IEP) Guidelines (referred to as the IEP Guidelines from here on). This new resource is intended as a compact reference to current New Zealand research, policy, and effective practice in supporting students with special education needs.

This website provides a collection of tools, tips, and templates to support IEP teams in collaborating for success.

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List of references used in developing Collaboration for Success: Individual Education Plans:

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