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Posts tagged "Orange County"

The ABCs of AAC in the IEP: Huh?

Determining the supports and services required to satisfy a student's unique needs can be a difficult process. Under the Individuals with Disability Education Act (IDEA), schools have a duty to "consider the communication needs of the child" and "consider whether the child needs assistive technology (AT) devices and services." If you believe that your child may benefit from supportive services such as AT or Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) devices, request an AT or AAC evaluation in writing.

Repeal of the "Hughes Bill"

Up until recently California had been providing children with serious behavior problems, assessments and behavioral interventions above and beyond that which was required by federal law. Through a California law commonly known as the "Hughes Bill" California schools were required to provide these students with what was known as a Functional Analysis Assessment (also referred to as an FAA).

Appropriate Assessments for Your Child

One of the most critical steps to understanding your child's specific educational needs is obtaining appropriate assessments. Once your child has been appropriately assessed within all areas of need, both yourself and the IEP team will have a much better understanding of how to best maximize your child's learning potential. Therefore, it is important that all parents understand the legal requirement for school districts to comprehensively assess students in all suspected areas of need.

Other Health Impairment: What Does It Mean?

Your child has been diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder by their medical doctor, and you want the school district to do an assessment to determine the need for additional services. The school district does the assessment, and the results come back showing that your child has average cognitive ability, average academic performance and has moderate grades. Your child is diagnosed with ADHD, and is reported as having some off task behaviors in class, but their classroom teacher says they can be redirected and are doing fine academically. Does your child qualify for special education services?

Does my child qualify for special education services under the category of Emotional Disturbance?

       Is your child having difficulty getting along with peers and teachers at school? Does your child seem to be consistently depressed? Is your child exhibiting signs of severe anxiety regarding school and peers? Are any of these factors beginning to have an impact on your child's grades? If so, your child may be eligible for Special Education Services under the category of Emotional Disturbance. The eligibility requirements for qualification under the category of Emotional Disturbance are as follows:

What Is Your Child Educationally Entitled To?

       School districts are required to provide all students with a Free and Appropriate Public Education, often times referred to as "FAPE". What constitutes "appropriate" is a point of much contention between parents, school districts and attorneys alike. Therefore, it has been left up to the courts to shed more light on what actually constitutes an appropriate public education. Located below is a brief glimpse into how different courts have weighed in on this discussion. In determining whether the Local Education Agency has offered Student a FAPE, the proper focus is on the adequacy of the offer of placement.[1] If a student fails to make progress within a reasonable period of time, the LEA must convene an IEP meeting to address the student's lack of progress.[2] A LEA's continuation of inadequate services will almost certainly be regarded as a denial of FAPE. [3]

Nonpublic School vs. Private School: What's the Difference?

In some instances, parents want to place their children somewhere other than a comprehensive public school campus. This may include consideration of a child's special needs, past performance or just a personal preference by the parents or the child. Whatever the considerations may be, many times parents understand that a private school is the same thing as a nonpublic school, which is not necessarily accurate, especially if you're asking for the school district to foot the bill.

Understanding the IEP Process

     Every parent who attends an IEP meeting is simply looking to obtain an educational placement that is appropriate for their child, and will allow their child to make substantive progress throughout the school year. However, the IEP process can also be very stressful and confusing. What all parents should be aware of in preparing for an IEP meeting, is that the burden is on the school district to provide a Free and Appropriate Public Education ("FAPE") for all children. Not only must the educational placement be appropriate, but it also must be qualify as a clear written offer of placement. (Union Sch. Dist, v Smith, (9th Cir. 1994), 15 F.3d 1519.)

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