Class Actions – Not a Primary Vehicle for Accomplishing Change

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We think the school system continues to prey on parents in I.E.P. meetings. Having good information is valuable but does no good when the school preys on parents knowing full well these parents  cannot challenge them. You should start pushing class actions and parents sticking together in a unified action.

Class actions can cost many thousands of dollars, 50K to 100k+. Sometimes these costs are not reimbursable to either attorney or parent.

Are you proffering to fund one or more? If so, I can direct you to some law firms that might be willing to jump in. 🙂

One Case Can Make a Difference…

A single case can also turn everything around for a large number of families.

An example: My US Supreme Court case (9-0 decision),  Shannon Carter v. Florence County School District. The legal issue in the Carter case involved a child with dyslexia in a private school taught by educators who were not state certified, licensed, or endorsed.

Yet, the Carter case became the legal basis for parents of children with autism receiving reimbursement for ABA / Lovaas therapy, even when provided by someone not licensed/certified as a special educator, which was the standard prior to Carter.

Self-Empowered Parents Can Challenge Successfully

Parents are prey, just as animals in the animal kingdom are prey, when they are viewed as weak, and are in fact, weak, without knowledge of the law and their rights.

If parents are unwilling or unable to take the steps to empower themselves, they will remain weak and their children will suffer.

Parents can challenge, and do so successfully all of the time. But first they have to do their homework and get their ducks in a row.

Parent who views themselves as victims and feel sorry for their child, are often unable or unwilling to take the steps to self-empowerment.

As an attorney, I have never believed in class actions as a primary vehicle to accomplish change through the courtroom. Instead – one case, at a time, on a targeted issue.

Good examples:

1954 – (9-0 decision) Brown v. Bd of Education, 347 U. S. 483

1967 – (9-0 decision)  Loving v. Virginia (permitting marriages between the races)

1993 – (9-0 decision) Florence Co. Sch Dist Four v. Shannon Carter, 510 U.S. 7

  1. in SC the system is broken. Our district has spent well over $500,000 on SD lawyers, and hiring consultants in an effort to keep my son’s educational costs at a minimum ( $0.00/ 5 yr) so they can ‘win’ at all costs. If that means destroying children and families in the process, so be it. These are not the folks I would want educating my children.

    I’ll reserve my comments about the ‘justice system’ after our 4th Circuit Court of App decision. Schools can act with total disregard for law and with impunity.

    NOTHING will change until SD and staff are held individually and personally responsible for the damage they do.

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