It can often be a confusing thing for both students and parents to understand; when is a student considered to be "at school" for disciplinary purposes? A quick exploration of the California Education Code can lend some assistance in answering this question.
The Office of Administrative Hearings has previously held that a district may suspend a child with a disability who violates a code of student conduct from his current placement for not more than 10 school days in the same manner and under the same conditions that it would suspend a nondisabled student. (34 C.F.R. § 300.530(d)(3)).
Many parents face a similar dilemma with disciplinary action against their special needs child: We went to an IEP labeled a "manifestation determination," and the team said the child's behavior was not manifestation and my child is now being subjected to disciplinary action. Most have a million questions, but most prevalent is "why was the behavior not a manifestation?"
The situation seems hopeless. Your child was suspended for a violation of CA Education Code Section 48900, most likely for 5 days. To make matters worse, you were called into a meeting with the principal and other school personnel, and you were told that your child is being recommended for expulsion from the school district. You were given a date where an expulsion hearing would take place, and told you could have someone there to represent you and your child, but really what can anyone do?