Aides: DOES HAVING AIDE ON IEP ALSO INCLUDE FIELD TRIPS? (CA)

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David: My 4th grade Son has ADHD. He has an IEP in place and an behavioral Aide is assigned to him. An optional field trip to Sacramento is scheduled for the 4th grade on a Friday (school day). The field trip is an all day event that includes flying. Is the District required to provide his Aide for the Field Trip?

  1. I have a 6-year old daughter in a wheelchair with spina bifida. She’s started a summer school program today. She has an IEP, and qualifies for 1:1 aide during the regular school year, but the school district has said, ‘Because attendance at the summer school program is optional/voluntary, we are not required to provide an aide.’ I don’t know if this is correct or not. All thoughts are appreciated.

    • Was the summer school program part of an ESY plan? If so, an aid would likely still be required.

      I’m not sure about optional summer school outside the IEP plan, which is why it’s best to argue for summer school to de defined under ESY.

  2. Is the district fully responsible for providing the funding for the aide? We have a situation in which there is a 3 day overnight trip to a nature education center. The school is communicating to the PTO/parents that they must fundraise to cover the costs of an aide ($1500) and daily van transportation for the students who do not wish to stay overnight. My sense is that since aides and transportation are listed in several students’ IEPs, the district should cover the costs, and not put it onto the parents to fundraise. (This is already a very expensive program–$300 per student–and we need to fundraise heartily to make sure these costs don’t fall on individual families).

    • If you have not done so, you can move your request up the chain of command. It sounds like it would be hard for the school to justify not paying for an aide. However, a bus for those who do not want to stay is another issue. Keep us posted on how things go.

  3. I have a 5 year old son with severe adhd, chromosome 21 deletion, sensory disorder, language disorder(only5 to10 words grunts points makes up own signs to communicate) , intellectual disability etc. School denies all Dr’s orders examples are 1 on 1 aide school says aide will go as far as wiping his nose therefore he will lose all independence, Pediatric Dr wants him homeschooled school says he needs socialization and will not give us paperwork, Dr says special ed classes school says no he needs socialization, Dr says behavior class for summer school says no because he can’t talk etc I feel as if he’s being discriminated against. Dr even asked for him to be taken out of class for few minutes until calm school calls us to pick him up instead. I am at my wits end do not know which way to turn

  4. He is entitled to whatever help he receives in school on the field trip that is being offered by the school.

  5. There are a couple of ways to look at this question.

    Your child has an IEP. The IEP includes the special education, related services and supplementary aids and services your child needs. The term ‘supplementary aids and services’ refers to aids, services, and supports that are provided in regular education classes or other education-related settings to enable children with disabilities to be educated with nondisabled children to the maximum extent appropriate. (See definition in Wrightslaw: Special Education Law, page 55, see also Nonacademic services, p 206). Having the aid accompany your child on the field trip is a supplementary aid or service that your child needs.

    Because your child has an IEP, he is also protected from discrimination by Section 504.
    Section 504 requires public schools to provide services to meet the needs of students with disabilities as adequately as it meets the needs of students without disabilities. Section 504 ensures that students with disabilities have equal access to programs, including equal access to field trips.

    Field trips are an important part of the school experience. Section 504 requires schools to presume that children with disabilities will participate in field trips with their classmates. If your child has an aide, the aide should accompany him on the field trip.

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