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Parents, educators, advocates, and attorneys come to Wrightslaw for accurate, reliable information about special education law, education law, and advocacy for children with disabilities.
Begin your search in the Advocacy Libraries and Law Libraries. You will find thousands of articles, cases, and resources about dozens of topics:
IDEA 2004 l Special Education l Law l Advocacy
Books, DVDs, Websites
Newsletter: Subscribe to the free, weekly Special Ed Advocate.
In this issue of the Special Ed Advocate you will learn about power struggles between parents and schools and find advice about how to avoid them. Learn advocacy strategies that help you make good educational decisions for your child. Solving Problems with the School.
New! Multimedia Training
|55 minute MP4 video
Pete Wright has created a 55 minute MP4 video about writing due process request letters and state complaints. The principles in the video relate to all letters.
This live presentation teaches you how to create visual imagery to tell a story in your letter. Your letter may become the theme of your case.
Read the new OSEP guidance for State Complaint procedures and get links to sample letters.
Click here for the description of the new download and watch the trailer.
New! - $$$$$$ - Eight Million Dollar Settlement!
Largest Special Ed Settlement Ever! Child Abuse by School Staff. December 18, 2013: The Contra Costa Times reports that
"The Antioch school district announced Wednesday night it will pay $8 million to the families of eight kindergarten special education students over a teacher child abuse case and the failure of administrators to report abuse suspicions to the proper authorities." Wrightslaw has downloaded the Complaint filed in the U. S. District Court and it is located in our "pleadings" page. See:
New - U.S. Dept of Justice v. Day Care Center!
On November 27, 2013 the USDOJ and Camelot Day Care Center in Edmond, OK entered into a Settlement Agreement. The child, with Down Syndrome and toileting issues, was denied participation in field trips. In addition to paying $3,000 to the parents, the child will have a full year, tuition free, at Camelot. Click here to read the Settlement Agreement.
New Case - Charter School in Contempt, Must Pay $176,722! -
Pursuant to the "stay-put / pendency" statute (20 USC 1415(f)), on November 4, 2013, the United States District Court of Arizona held the "tuition-free, public charter" Flagstaff Arts and Leadership Academy in contempt of Court and ordered them to pay $176,722.00 for the child's private placement by November 15, 2013 or face further sanctions. (Click here for ruling of Contempt and Order to pay.)
While the child was enrolled in the charter school, the parents contested the IEP, removed the child to a private placement and requested a due process hearing. The Administrative Law Judge ruled in their favor, (click here for decision). The school appealed and the parent's attorney, Hope Kirsch filed a Counterclaim. (Click here for Counterclaim). The Charter School asserted that they could not afford to pay. The Court noted that their problem is "an allocation of resources problem, not an absence of resources." We will keep you posted.
On July 23, 2013, the U. S. Department of Education issued a 64 page document consisting of questions and answers relating to Mediation, State Complaint Procedures, Due Process Hearing, Resolution Sessions and Expedited Due Process. In addition to posting the complete document, Wrightslaw has broken it down into the specific components as smaller files.
Regulation Revised! Access to Medicaid benefits revised! On February 14, 2013 the US Dept of Education revised 34 CFR 300.154(d), the Medicare consent and notice regulations. We posted a YouTube video about the revised reg and possible Medicaid Fraud. Click here for the video.
New! IEP Pop-Up In the Pop-Up: Resolving IEP Disputes you will learn strategies to resolve disagreements, steps to take if you disagree with the school, and options you have if unable to resolve disputes.
You are Invited Visit the Wrightslaw Way Blog. Help us create a unique online community. Recent posts and comments ...
I've Never Heard That I Could Request School Files
Starting a New IEP Advocacy Year: Back to School Tips!
Wrightslaw Training Coming to Grand Rapids, MI!
Special Education / Education
Homebound Services: 2 Hours Week = FAPE?
Least Restrictive Environment (LRE) and FAPE
Special Education / Advocacy
From Emotions to Advocacy - The Parents' Journey
Advocacy Rule #1: Write Things Down When They Happen!
Legal Issues & Decisions
Decisions from Courts of Appeals
Doug C. v. Hawaii (9th Cir. 2013) - On June 13, 2013, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued an important decision about parental participation at IEP meetings. Pete says that "All special education staff who conduct IEP meetings should be familiar with this landmark ruling about IEP meetings and parental participation." Click here to read Pete's comprehensive analysis about the case. The original decision as issued by the Court is located here. It is also the subject of a YouTube video by Pete.
R.E., M.E., et al v. NYC Dept of Education (2nd Cir. 2012) - 2nd Circuit adopts the “snap-shot” rule to judge the adequacy of an IEP written in Burlington/Carter reimbursement cases; held that retrospective testimony about additional services that the also district "would have provided," but which were not offered in the IEP, cannot be used to rehabilitate an IEP or prove its adequacy.
Anchorage School District v. MP (9th Cir. 2012) In awarding reimbursement to the parents, the Court noted that "we are sympathetic to the difficulties posed by the obviously strained relationship between the ASD and M.P.'s parents, but this circumstance does not excuse the ASD from compliance with the IDEA. To conclude otherwise would subvert the purposes of the IDEA and sanction a school district's unilateral decision to abandon its statutorily required responsibility to the detriment of its students."
Anthony Zeno v Pine Plains School District (2d Cir. 2012) - Court upholds $1M jury award against NY school district that was deliberately indifferent to severe racial harassment of a special education student for 3 1/2 years ..."that [may have] a profound, long-term impact on Anthony's life and his ability to earn a living ..."
with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA 2004)
Legal Requirements of IEPs
Model Forms for IEPs, Procedural Safeguards, Prior Written Notice
What You Need to Know About IDEA 2004
Law School Exam - Give it a try. Take the Final Exam that Pete and Pam administered to their students at the William &
Mary School of Law. To see one of their students in oral argument in an
LRE case, click here.
2015 Institute of Special Education Advocacy (ISEA) August 2 - 7, 2015. Registration will be considered on a rolling bi-monthly basis from February 1, 2015 - June 30, 2015. Registration Details and Application TBA. Meet the faculty and graduates from ISEA 2013; review the program agenda. View the 2013 Slideshow. LIVE Blogging from ISEA 2013.
Flyers, Resources, Pubs
for College Students with Disabilities Flyer
Need to find an attorney, advocate, tutor, therapist in your state? Visit the Yellow
Pages for Kids with Disabilities
Books, DVDs & Websites
For a year and a half, Pete and Pam Wright were
Adjunct Professors of Law at the William and Mary School of Law where they
taught a course about special education law and advocacy and assisted with creation of
the Law School's Special Education Law Clinic. They are co-founders and faculty at the William and Mary Law School Institute of Special Education Advocacy (ISEA).
They are co-authors
of several books published by Harbor House
Wrightslaw: Special Education Law, 2nd Edition (ISBN: 978-1-892320-16-2, 456 pages) available in two formats, as a print publication and as a print and e-book combo.
Wrightslaw: From Emotions to Advocacy, 2nd Edition (978-1-892320-09-4, 338 pages)
Wrightslaw: No Child Left Behind with Suzanne Whitney (ISBN: 978-1-892320-12-4); includes the NCLB CD-ROM of resources and references.
Wrightslaw: All About IEPs (ISBN: 978-1-892320-20-9, 192 pages) by Pete Wright, Pam Wright, and Sue O'Connor.
Wrightslaw: All About Tests and Assessments (ISBN: 978-1-892320-23-o, 200 pages) by Pete Wright, Pam Wright, and Melissa Farrall.
Surviving Due Process: Stephen Jeffers v. School Board DVD Video - award-winning documentary, 2 hours.
Pete and Pam built several websites to help parents of children with
disabilities in their quest for quality special education programs.
Fetaweb.com, the companion website to Wrightslaw: From Emotions to Advocacy, has advocacy information and resources to supplement the FETA book.
IDEA 2004 at Wrightslaw provides current information about the Individuals
with Disabilities Education Act of 2004 (IDEA 2004). Learn about new requirements
for IEPs, IEP teams, IEP meetings, eligibility, evaluations, eligibility for specific
learning disabilities, child find, reevaluations, parental consent, accommodations,
alternate assessments, transition, and more.
Child Left Behind at Wrightslaw offers accurate, up-to-date information
about the No Child Left Behind Act - research-based instruction, proficiency testing,
parent involvement, tutoring and supplemental educational services, highly qualified
teachers, and public school choice.
At the Yellow Pages for Kids with Disabilities,
you'll find listings for educational consultants, advocates, advisors,
psychologists, diagnosticians, health care specialists, academic tutors,
speech language therapists, and attorneys. You'll also find government
programs, grassroots organizations, disability organizations, legal and
advocacy resources, special education schools, and parent support
Last revised: 09/16/14