The Wrightslaw Way

to Special Education Law and Advocacy

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Hot Topics: Quick Picks

by Wrightslaw

student with basketball in a wheelchair

My Child Needs PE. May I request that the school put at least 10 minutes a day of physical activity for my child on his IEP?

If your child has a disability and an IEP, the school must provide physical education as part of your child’s special education program.

Answer: Read IDEA requirements for specially designed Physical Education and Adapted Physical Education (APE)

Do I Have a Right to Observe My Child’s Classroom?

I want to observe the class before agreeing (or not agreeing) to a placement for my child? The special ed director said I cannot observe the class because of confidentiality issues with the other children.

Answer: In Parent Observations v. Student Confidentiality, Pete and Pam offer strategies to deal with administrators who take positions that are not based on law, or common sense. [Read more →]

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US DOJ Technical Assistance on Testing Accommodations

by Wrightslaw

Teen girl taking test in class.

The US Department of Justice issues Technical Assistance on Testing Accommodations for individuals with disabilities who take standardized exams and high-stakes tests.

DOJ addresses the obligation to ensure that the test scores of individuals with disabilities accurately reflect the individual’s aptitude, achievement, or the skill that the exam purports to measure, rather than his or her disability.

This guidance document clarifies:

  • who is entitled to testing accommodations
  • what types of testing accommodations must be provided
  • what documentation may be required of the person requesting testing accommodations
  • prohibited flagging policies
  • how test scores for test-takers receiving disability-related accommodations should be reported

A person with a history of academic success may still be a person with a disability who is entitled to testing accommodations under the ADA. [Read more →]

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Sale Date Extended – Back to School Sale – 25% OFF – FREE Shipping

by Wrightslaw

Back to School Sale 25% off

Save 25% on All Wrightslaw Products!

Free Shipping on Orders Over $35!

Order Now!

Use Coupon Code 20150924 when ordering to receive your discount.


  • all Wrightslaw Books
  • E-Books
  • Training Downloads
  • Advocacy Supplies
  • DVD

Bulk Orders receive up to a 50% discount. Please call 1-877-529-4332 to receive a bulk rate quote.

Offer valid through October 8, 2015!

Tell a friend!

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Change of Services in High School – “That’s All We Offer!”

by Wrightslaw

teen girl in classMy daughter is in middle school, where she receives skills support every day in an inclusion program. At the annual review, we were told she will now only receive skills support every other day because that is all the high school offers.  Can the district automatically make this change?

Your daughter’s educational program and services are developed by the IEP Team (you are part of that Team) and written in the IEP.

The Model IEP Form

IDEA requires that your child’s IEP includes the frequency, duration, location, and projected dates for services.

34 C.F.R. Section 300.320(a)(7) in Wrightslaw: All About IEPs, page 43.

Read the US DOE Guidance on the required content of IEPs explained in the Model IEP Form. [Read more →]

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Got Questions? Wrightslaw Has Answers!

by Wrightslaw

Wrightslaw Provides Answers to Your Questions Video

Looking for information on

Watch the video “Wrightslaw Provides Answers to Your Questions.”

You’ll find the video at the top of our main Wrightslaw page.

Pete created a five minute overview about how to find:

  • the statute
  • cases
  • pleadings
  • articles
  • and more…

In this video, Pete will walk you through how to find information on the Wrightslaw website. Learn how to use the powerful “search box” tool to find caselaw and jury trials. Scroll through the Topics listings, find the Yellow Pages for Kids Directory, and see what’s available on the Wrightslaw YouTube Channel.

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Can the School Refuse to Allow a Service Dog?

by Wrightslaw

Service DogCan a school refuse a service dog for a child with behavior and emotional disability because they do not allow any pets?   The school does not want any animals on school property and is not permitting a service dog for my daughter.

Guidance on the Service Animal Provisions DOJ Regulations

This 2011 publication provides guidance on the term “service animal” and the service animal provisions in the Department of Justice final regulations (2010) implementing the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) for title II and title III.

How a Service Animal is Defined states: “Service animals are working animals, not pets. The work or task a dog has been trained to provide must be directly related to the person’s disability.”

Special Rules Related to Service Animals states: “Allergies and fear of dogs are not valid reasons for denying access or refusing service to people using service animals. When a person who is allergic to dog dander and a person who uses a service animal must spend time in the same room or facility, for example, in a school classroom or at a homeless shelter, they both should be accommodated by assigning them, if possible, to different locations within the room or different rooms in the facility.” [Read more →]

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Reminder – Wrightslaw Training Coming to El Paso, TX!

by Wrightslaw

Wayne Steedman, Esq., will present this one-day Wrightslaw Special Education Law and Advocacy Training on September 24, 2015. The Federal Bar Association, El Paso Chapter sponsors the training. The conference will take place at the Albert Armendariz, Sr. U.S. Courthouse in El Paso. TX.

Registration includes a morning snack and refreshments, boxed lunch, a Wrightslaw highlighter pen and two Wrightslaw books which retail for $49.90, Wrightslaw: Special Education Law, 2nd Edition, and Wrightslaw: From Emotions to Advocacy, 2nd Edition.

Click here to Register Online!

Download and share the training flyer!

Click here to see all of the wonderful things that El Paso has to offer!

See you in Texas!



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Did You Complete the Parent Advocacy Self-Study? Download Your Certificate!

by Wrightslaw

Wrightslaw 2015 Summer School Short CourseWe hope you enjoyed our Self-Study Summer Advocacy Series.

Download your Certificate

If you did not have a chance to finish, you can still review and catch up.

Advocacy Program for the New Parent – the 7 “Ps”

Week 1 – Your Advocacy Game Plan

Week 2 – Read One Book a Month

Week 3 – 10 Tips for Good Advocates

Week 4 – Link Up with Other Advocates

Week 5 – Become an Advocate

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Wrightslaw Training Coming to the Greater NYC Metropolitan Area Early Spring

by Wrightslaw

Join speaker Pete Wright, Esq., and sponsors, On With Learning, LLC., on Monday, February 29, 2016 at the Hilton Winchester in Rye Brook, NY for a Wrightslaw Special Education Law and Advocacy Training.  Rye Brook, NY is located in the Greater NYC Metropolitan Area.

Conference fee includes Continental Breakfast, morning refreshments, coffee and tea, beverages through the day and a deluxe boxed lunch. Conference bag and guidebook are included along with a Wrightslaw highlighter pen and the four Wrightslaw books which retail for $77.80 – Wrightslaw: Special Education Law, 2nd Edition, Wrightslaw: From Emotions to Advocacy, 2nd Edition, Wrightslaw: All About IEPs and Wrightslaw: All About Tests and Assessments.

Register Online Now!

Download the Registration Form!

Download the registration flyer!

Credits: CLEs (continuing legal education) credits are pending for this conference. 0.6 CEUs (continuing education units) have been approved for this conference. CEU’s are provided by the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Education. They provide both graduate credit for practicing teachers and CEU’s for a variety of professionals who need to document their professional development hours. There will be a separate fee associated for both.

Exhibitors: Special Needs Exhibitors will be available during registration, breaks and lunch.

For all conference details, to include registration fees and agenda please click here.

See you in Rye Brook, NY!

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Self-Study Week 5: Help Others! Become an Advocate

by Wrightslaw

group of advocatesStep #1: New parent advocates need to plan and prepare, learn information, and develop strategies.

Step #2: New parent advocates need opportunities to practice advocacy skills.

Offer to go to IEP Team meetings with other parents.

  • Offer to be a friendly face at the table. Explain that you are trying to learn.
  • When you attend an IEP meeting for others, you are more objective. You will see the games people play, and that some school personnel know how to push parent’s “buttons.”
  • At school meetings you’ll learn more about school culture, the players, their roles, and their personalities – and how to negotiate with them.

You can help other parents, who are new to advocacy, prepare their game plan!

Want to learn who can become a lay advocate and what advocates do? [Read more →]

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