My idea is to explore how other countries around the world are dealing with education and special education issues. I’d like to see different successful schools, wherever they may be, up close. I’d like to sit down with directors and administrators. I’d like to speak with government officials who keep a pulse on the education affairs of their communities. I want to learn more about education around the globe through speaking with locals, seeing the schools, and shaking hands with the people responsible for implementing the systems. If you know of any outstanding (public or private) special needs schools in other parts of the world, I’d love to hear about them. If you know any education experts from around the world, I’d love to be introduced to them. Please do not hesitate to share your thoughts or ideas. Read more about my mission.
Sunday, March 24, 2013
Sunday, March 17, 2013
If you can't make it to London to see the show you might want to check out the book:
Thursday, March 14, 2013
Interestingly, this case began with an IHO determination in favor of the parents. This case concerns a child with autism, Tourette's, and ADHD whose parents were initially awarded tuition reimbursement for the Luria Academy of Brooklyn (a private placement), funding for the services of therapists and a paraprofessional, and reimbursement for transportation costs. The IHO determined, in part, that:
- the parent had not been given the opportunity to meaningfully participate in the decision making process,
- the decisions of the IEP had been predetermined,
- the IEP team did not adequately consider the negative impact of the large size of the recommended classroom, and
- other substantive inadequacies existed such as the failure to conduct/recommend a functional behavior assessment, a twelve-month school year, and parent training and counseling.
Wednesday, March 13, 2013
- A fantastic presentation by Amy Langerman, Esq. about behavior management
- A session with Brian Reichow, PhD., BCBA-D, about the implications of the new DSM-5, especially for individuals with autism
- An interactive litigation strategies session headed by Jon Zimring, Esq.
- A special education finance session with Sonja Kerr, Esq.
- A session presented by Andy Feinstein, Esq. and Caroline Heller, Esq. about the meaning of "free appropriate public education"
- A brainstorming session for 2013 policy considerations
The conference also covered developments in recent case law and current trends in special education.
Tuesday, March 5, 2013
In this case, the Department of Education (DOE) provided notice to the parents regarding one school placement and then defended a different school placement at the impartial hearing. The IHO ultimately ruled in favor of the parents after determining that the DOE had not met its burden of proving that the child would have progressed as a result of the program and placement that the DOE had recommended. (It appears that the DOE's placement would have employed a TEACCH methodology, whose effectiveness for this child was not supported by the record.)
Oral arguments for this case were lengthy, at least compared to other cases that were heard that morning. The case of R.E. v. New York City Department of Education, a recent decision from the Second Circuit, played a prominent role in the discussions. The parties argued about issues of transparency in the special education process, a parent's reliance interest with respect to a recommended placement, the extent to which the individual acting as district representative at a child's IEP meeting must be familiar with "alternate resources" (other than public school programs) that can meet a child's needs, the issue of educational methodology and the role of a 1:1 paraprofessional, and the burden of proof in IDEA cases.
It is noteworthy that when asked why the Court should defer to the SRO rather than the IHO, the attorney for the school district did not have an answer.