Parent Rights: AWARE OF PARENT RIGHT VIOLATIONS

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Sandy:  If a school becomes aware of a previous special education teacher who improperly discontinued special education services of a student without following procedural requirements and without parent involvement or knowledge, do all school employees aware of the violations have a legal requirement to inform the parents? School administration is planning to simply reinstate services after over a year of no services without informing the parents that such an error occurred.

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Chuck is right. If a child is eligible for special ed and had an IEP that described the services the school agreed to provide, the school can’t pretend they provided services when this is not the case. If you are a teacher or support staff and you know that a teacher is not providing services, you should put this in writing to protect yourselves.
Years ago, in a case called Doe v. Withers, a history teacher refused to provide accommodations in a boy’s IEP. The child failed, could not begin college as planned. The parents sued that teacher and half a dozen other school staff. If they had written a note to the principal or special ed director, they were off the hook in the lawsuit. A jury ordered the history teacher to pay $15,000 + fees in damages to the boy and parents.

Chuck

The student was denied services that had been determined to be needed. Legally they have been “harmed” by the teacher’s actions. The missed services should be made up (compensatory services), in addition to reinstating services. By only reinstating services, the school is taking the “easy” way to deal with this. I believe that legally & ethically this is wrong. Wrightslaw can give you more about the legal implications of the proposed actions for the school & staff members who are aware of this.

Marlene

My son, then 6, was denied occupational therapy for over a semester. While volunteering at the special ed. ctr. I was told by a paraprofessional on site, “I have to tell you that your son’s O.T. made open remarks regarding not providing OT services. He was in a pull -out for OT in a therapy room. She stated her fear of a 43 lb. child whom cooperated with a 1 to 1 paraprofessional, but never engaged properly to find out. yet made the statement, “I can’t pay my mortgage if this kid hurts me transitioning him to the therapy room from class 2x per week”. She just didn’t do it. I talked with the principal whom handled it by stating compensatory therapies were due. I handled this informally, yet met with the vice principal to manage the timelines to cover this.

Marlene

My son did not receive his compensatory OT services due, however, fyi he was placed on a stay put status with a goal of utilization of scissors from that point for the duration of his educational years, until he was recently aged out at 22 here in California. During due process, before it was dust in the wind, A big wig from headquarters came to meet me with three other administrators (not his teacher). He stated, ‘If you want the honest truth; every student in special education requires OT therapy. However it would financially BUST the school district.” My response was immediate, “Meeting adjourned.” I never thought his opportunity to self-regulate handling his stemming and inability to even hold a pencil would evaporate when it was then stated, “He plateaued at age 7”.