General Ed: GENERAL EDUCATION RIGHTS VERSUS SPECIAL EDUCATION RIGHTS

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Charmaine:  I work in a school that has a behavior unit. At what point can a student be pulled out of general education classes due to violent and threatening behavior? The law says special education students should be in the least restrictive environment possible as long as they do disrupt the classes ability to learn.

Is it ok for a student to plop down in the hallway and scream all day long (sometimes left alone), while students are trying to learn in classrooms all around him?

Is it ok for a special education student to disrupt the entire Veterans day program by screaming and slapping the wall…..I feel the students and the parents that came to see their children deserved to be able to enjoy and actually here their children and speakers.

Is it alright for children to be threatened on a daily basis and sometimes kicked and hit?

I do not care for an answer with a bunch of references about IEP’s and intervention techniques.

I understand that special education children have the right to a free education and should be able to receive all the help they need. Many times they are put in situations that set them up to fail, all in the name of inclusion. Please give me an “at the end of the day” answer.

Beyond all of the interventions and accommodations, do their rights over ride the rights of general education students to have a safe and disruptive free environment. Some children thrive with inclusion and I love that. However, it is not appropriate for every child.

At what point can it be determined that they are too dangerous to be in general education classrooms. Or I guess is it even possible? I feel that school districts resist removal because of the cost of an alternative setting. Also, the law states that you cannot put a child in a room and not allow them to leave. So what are you supposed to do when a child is in a rage and runs out of the school? It makes no sense.

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Autism Parent

My son has behavioral issues stemming from Autism. School refuses to help will not even do an FBA for him. They have decided that the General Education kids are more important than my son because they are going to do things with their lives. They threw him into a self contained class so the other kids could learn without distractions. I requested for him to be moved back to a general ed setting but the school refused saying they have to educate all of the kids. What about teaching kids diversity and working with students who are disabled? What is the schools problem and how can i get them to help my son.

Marcus

The school maybe taking the position of they cannot educate your son. However he is teachable. Request for that FBA in writing ASAP. Teachers need to know what triggers his meltdown. From there they will do Behavioral Intervention Plan which will give his teachers the tools they need to calm him down. If they refuse to do this they must give you prior written notice. If you continue to have problems with the school please file a complaint with OCR or the State Education Agency. You can even request mediation with the school.

Renee

My daughter is a general education student in an inclusive classroom that is half general education and half ASD students. My daughter and her peers in the classroom have been attacked physically and abused on multiple occasions (on a daily/weekly basis) since September. Parents have complained, meetings have been held, the school committee and local politicians have been informed. The fact that physical abuse is continuing is wrong on so many levels. All children in the classroom deserve to be safe ASD and Gen Ed. All of the parents are sick over this situation. We feel alone, angry and scared for all children involved. When is enough, enough? Why isn’t physical abuse taken more seriously? These are children!

Julie

That should not be allowed to happen. I also need to know the protocol when a special education student is interfering with other students’ learning. I am all about inclusion and making it work for all. But sometimes it isn’t the right thing to do.

Peter

You could write this same post and remove all reference to “ASD students” and you would be describing a situation that plays out in thousands of classrooms every day. For every study focused on ASD and aggression there is another focused on ADHD and ODD and don’t get me started on mental health studies about anxiety, depression etc.

One thing that is fairly consistent in ASD is a need for routine and order. These needs very often result in people who are rule followers – the rules create the order that creates the security of predictable outcomes in the person with ASD.

“ASD students” with sensory challenges or co-occurring conditions (including mental health) and inadequately trained teachers may not be best served in gen. ed. – but many (maybe MOST) do very well!

Varner

Is it ok for a teacher asst to assault your child with special needs? NO just like it’s not alright for them to assault a NON SPECIAL NEEDS CHILD.

Angela

My niece has been assaulted by a 504 plan student 3 separate times now. The school is doing nothing to protect my child. Can her mother file assault charges against this other student? She has left marks and bruises on my niece every time.

Dee

Yes, she can file assault charges against other student.

C.J.

Special ed law trumps general ed law every single time. Special ed kids have more rights than general ed kids and if you fight it in court you will lose. It is the same with minority students. They are protected from discipline because it is “cultural” and districts are afraid their discipline numbers will look disproportional. I am so glad that my children have graduated because of all of the crap they would have to deal with from all of the other students. Good students don’t bring poor students up, poor students pull good students down. Proven fact..

April

Thank GOD my kids have graduated. I would not tolerate for one minute what I see happening to classrooms with extreme behavior students. If I didn’t need the money to survive I would walk away from this absurdity. Ohhhhh, they have this history of abuse…guess what? now all the kids who have been in their class have the same abuse.

Carlita

Define “good kid.” And then post your bigoted alternative “fact” because that is not true. Poor kids don’t bring strong-minded “good” kids down. Only weak needing to fit in kids who are incorrectly labeled “good” would follow a not so good kid. And what kinda “good” kid follows the primrose path of an ASD pied piper? That “good kid” is a stalker because believe me, the 1 thing ASD kids are is indifferent to the company of others, especially “peers.” They don’t want to be bothered which is probably what causes the meltdowns because some “good kid” wants to be friends or worse, bully, which sadly may end in aggression.

Peter

Carlita – while I agree with your sentiment mostly, I think kids with ASD often “appear” indifferent, but often really yearn for interpersonal relationships…they just need our help figuring out how it’s done!

I agree that aggression is often the result of bullying. Not only by other kids but also by intolerant and ignorant adults. If adults think they’ll raise a child with autism the same way as they were raised or the same way they raised another kid, they are in for a long, hard struggle. (Thank you for speaking up, BTW :))

Morning

I think school administrators pick their battles on which kids to move to more restrictive environments and some parents won’t allow such. From my experience, it can very very “traumatizing” to a room of kids (especially K-3) to see a kid “tear up” a classroom and the only solution is to clear out the classroom. I have seen children kicked, bitten, injured as well as staff. Some districts do not want to spend the funding to send kids to settings that may benefit them better. Some districts sadly blame the kids who are outplayed for “draining” the school budgets. There are no easy answers. All kids need an education and all kids need to feel safe.

Jen

Never was my child a general ed student first, no kids w/ medical complexities are. It might as well be 1985 again around here. Parents do not know either, they are working and struggling with medical challenges. There is nobody at Dhs that knows anything, and neither does the school social worker (for state services). School admins & directors they certainly are not telling parents about advocacy groups. I asked year after year, I called DHS every year I didn’t know the correct terminology, & I wasn’t asking correctly. It’s worse than I can even put into words. My child is medically complex, but she absolutely IS teachable. Southeast Michigan is not inclusive at all, esp if the child is medically severe.

Jen O.

It seems districts are one extreme or the other. I am the mom to a child who was placed in a separate school from day 1, 13 yrs ago. Knowing now what I do, no way would I have ever agreed to this setting. “Typical society” would view her (and does) as physicaly & mentally impaired, not a child w/ behaviors considered as “bad”. I hired an advocate after opening my eyes, requested FBA once I knew to, but it was denied. That was my last straw. After a lot of hoop jumping & an entire yr of school wasted, I was able to prove that the “glorified daycare” was not & never has provided Fape. When your local ISD agrees with you, & grants a deviation request without mediation or due process that says alot. Fry case will determine my steps. We are in MI also

Chuck

Schools are allowed to move students with disabilities into more restrictive environments. The special ed director, & school attorney should know how this can be done legally in your state. For some reason they are not doing this, or sharing their efforts with staff. Schools are also required to teach students appropriate behavior. It appears that your district is not doing this.

Julie

Chuck, I am a general education teacher in the state of Texas. I was a special education teacher for 18 years. The issue I am facing is having a AU child with behavior issues who is in first grade. He doesn’t comply to directions and it takes a bit of time to coax him to do what I have asked. In the meantime, 19 students are waiting for me to teach. They too are learning appropriate behaviors, and on a daily basis are witness to me taking so much time trying to have this child attend that it is not fair for them. Special Education dept. want to give general education more time where he can “learn” the proper social skills to make him successful. Our district is “data” driven so he looks good on paper but no one has observed his behaviors. Why aren’t behaviors a part of the data?

Peter

Julie – if the child needs an IEP you can talk to the parents and the administrators to have him tested. When he has an IEP his behaviors can be addressed in an FBA or just as a functional goal, depending on what the team comes up with. The benefit of having children educated with their peers isn’t debatable any longer, and IDEA gives educators and parents direction on how that can be accomplished. The IEP team can develop a plan that provides you AND the student with the resources and tools to allow him to learn in an inclusive classroom, or not, depending on his needs and the team’s decision.

Julie

Thank you, Peter. The student does have an IEP. Math is his strength, Language Arts is his weakness. He is speech impaired (SI) and has many behaviors that we are currently working on. Our Para’s need training and really are unsure how to work with him. Meantime, I have to step away from ‘teaching” the class because he is slamming student I-Pads or grabbing student papers. He has a BIP. We have everything in place that a child in special education can have for 1st grade in an open concept school. What he doesn’t have now is one on one in a quiet area to work on weaknesses (where he was excelling). It isn’t a support if you are having to train another adult while teaching. I’ve been a special education teacher and now a general education teacher. All my students have “needs”.

Chuck

Julie, as Peter says, a well written FBA, & BIP should be able to benefit the student, you & the other students. If they are not, they need to be rewritten. Your ESC should have an Autism specialist that can assist you. TX rules 89.1075(c), & (d) address your right to request help. You also need to learn about the TX Autism supplement rules, & what this child’s supplement says. I am in TX, & can give you help about the supplement. cnoe59@hotmail.com

Morning

Let’s focus on your question as that is the issue at hand. Why aren’t his behaviors part of the data? Who developed the data goals? If the behaviors were included, that may give the parents the documentation to take the student down a different path (evaluations, IEP, due process, outplacement, specialized therapy,,etc.). When I was a para, a teacher changed the behavioral data I had collected on a student (I was well trained in data gathering) to present a different pic to the parents and district supervisors. The teacher wanted to show progress and not show the “real picture” of how this student’s behaviors manifested in class. Some schools just “push and pass” as I call it to provide minimum services and pass on unaddressed issues to the next school.