At Wrightslaw, our mission is to help you gain the knowledge and skills you need to navigate the changing, confusing world of special education.
1. Judge Rules, "To Allow the School Board to Avoid Its Obligations Would Be Unconscionable"
In the May 31 issue of The Special Ed Advocate, you learned about the powerful, pro-child decision in Henrico County School Board v. R.T.
R. T. is a child with autism. In 2002, R.T.'s parents removed him from the public school gram and placed him into the Faison School, a private school that uses one-on-one ABA therapy to educate children with autism.
In the first decision in Henrico County School Board v. R. T., U. S. District Court Judge Payne awarded the parents reimbursement for their child's tuition at the school. The Judge found that the school district knowingly and repeatedly failed to provide an appropriate educational program for a young child with autism and slammed the School Board for "inertia."
On June 14, Judge Payne issued a second decision in R.T.'s case.
Henrico County School Board v. R. T.-2 deals with reimbursement for the child's tuition after the Hearing Officer issued a favorable decision. The School Board argued that they were not bound by a regulation that required them to reimburse the parents because the regulation violated the the Spending Clause of the Constitution.
In this decision, the Judge analyzed the School Board's argument and why it cannot be upheld:"Having agreed to comply with the IDEA ... and having accepted and spent federal IDEA funding, the School Board cannot now avoid the obligations ... to allow that would be unconscionable ... it would offend every principle of equity and good morals to permit (a party to a transaction) to enjoy its benefits and at the same time deny its terms and conditions."
The second decision in Henrico School Bd v. R.T.-2 includes an excellent discussion of FAPE, least restrictive environment (LRE), the use of due process hearings to resolve disagreements about a child's program or placement, when school districts must reimburse parents for a private placement, the 10 day notice letter, requirements that states must meet to receive federal funding under IDEA.
Read the first decision in Henrico County School Board v. R.T. at http://www.wrightslaw.com/law/caselaw/06/henrico.va.rt.htm
Read the second decision in Henrico County School Board v. R.T.-2 as a pdf file at http://www.wrightslaw.com/law/caselaw/06/henrico.va.rt-2.pdf
More autism caselaw.
More special education caselaw.
2. Analysis of Henrico School Board v. R.T. by Pete Wright
R. T. is a young child with autism. His parents removed him from the public school special education program and placed him into the Faison School. Later, the parents requested a due process hearing where they received a favorable decision. The school system appealed.
In this Analysis of Henrico County School Board v. R.T., Pete Wright discusses the first decision, including Burden of Proof and Burden of Persuasion after the U. S. Supreme Court ruling in Schaffer v. Weast and the analysis of ABA and TEACCH. The first decision also describes the deference, if any, that should be provided to school board programs, methodology, and to testimony by school board witnesses.
3. Surviving Due Process: Stephen Jeffers v. School Board is Based on True Story, Real Case
Surviving Due Process: Stephen Jeffers v. School Board is based on the true story of a young child with autism.
Trailers: Watch the trailer in Quicktime or on Windows Media Player
4. Autism, Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD), Asperger Syndrome (AS)
If you are like many parents, teachers, and health care providers, you have questions about special education services for children with autism, autism spectrum disorders, Pervasive Developmental Disorders (PDD) and Asperger Syndrome.
Visit our updated and revised Autism, ASD, PDD & Asperger Syndrome page for new articles, cases, resources, free publications, and information and support groups.
5. Fall Schedule: Special Ed Law & Advocacy Programs in MI, WA, NC, WV, OH, PA, IL - Boot Camps in FL & MD
Wrightslaw offers a variety of special education law and advocacy programs taught by nationally-known experts in the field. Our Fall 2006 schedule includes these programs.
November 10-11: Columbia, MD - Special Education Law & Advocacy Boot Camp sponsored by the Howard County Autism Society. Speakers: Pete and Pam Wright. Download Flyer & Registration Form
6. Subscription & Contact Info
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