Special Education AttorneysServices
special education services
- Developing IEP/504 Plans
- Addressing abuse in schools, including:
- Evaluations and Child Find Matters
- Fighting Disciplinary and Juvenile Court Matters, including:
– Suspension and Expulsion
– Search and Seizures
SERVING PARENTS OF SPECIAL EDUCATION STUDENTS & THEIR FAMILIES
WE UNDERSTAND THE NEEDS OF CHILDREN WITH SPECIAL EDUCATION ACCOMMODATIONS
Standing With You
Addressing Tough Situations
- Evaluating placements and team reports
- Fighting abuse, neglect and discrimination in schools (including the ADA and section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act)
- Due process hearings, juvenile court and other disciplinary issues impacting students
Best Lawyers® 2022 Lawyer of the year Susan Stone
KJK would like to congratulate Student & Athlete Defense Co-Chair and Partner Susan Stone on being named Best Lawyers® “Lawyer of the Year” in the Education category for 2022. Only one attorney receives the “Lawyer of the Year” distinction in each category and location, and the title is awarded to the lawyer that received the highest peer reviews in that category. Well done Susan!
Thank you for helping me through a difficult time with my son
We feel so fortunate that we were able to connect with you
When we found out about [OUR SCHOOL DISTRICT’S] intent to expel [OUR SON] we were disappointed in the school district and we were terrified of what it meant for [OUR SON]. We feel so fortunate that we were able to connect with you. On short notice you took the time to meet with us and gain a deep understanding of…his challenges. You were able to see beyond [OUR SON’S] behavioral difficulties and see him as the bright, inquisitive boy that he is.
We were impressed with how easily you navigated the challenge of working with the staff… and the attorneys representing the district. Without your representation there is no question that there would be unresolved issues related to [OUR SON’S] education and further legal hurdles to overcome with the school district.
DO YOU NEED A
SPECIAL EDUCATION LAWYER?
What’s the difference between a special education attorney and an advocate?
A special education advocate does not fulfill the same role for a student as a special education attorney might. Advocates in particular face certain limitations when collaborating with the parents of a disabled child.
Both advocates and attorneys can help the parents of a disabled student understand what amenities those students may have access to. They can look over a student’s IEP and 504 plan options to ensure that the student receives all of the necessary aid available to them. Advocates may also discuss a student’s misbehavior with parents but cannot recommend legal action.
Similarly, both of them can write letters to schools on behalf of a student’s parents, citing their familiarity with special education law, to ensure that a student receives all the academic assistance that they deserve.
Representation of Advocates and lawyers
Special education advocates cannot legally claim to practice law, and those who attempt to charge for their representation in due process hearings, impartial hearings, or academic environments may be charged with inappropriate legal practice. The ability of these individuals to speak on parents’ behalf in due process and impartial hearings varies from state to state.
However, special education advocates may consult with parents regarding IEP programs while charging for their services and can attend IEP meetings. At no point, however, can a special education advocate claim to represent their affiliates, nor can they speak for their affiliates in the midst of an IEP meeting.
Special education attorneys are not barred in this way. Parents working with a lawyer can rely on them not only for consultation but for representation in court and other related environments.
Fighting for You
Your Network of Advocates
Aiding K-12 Children with Autism
A child with autism has many rights while they are in school and an attorney could ensure each of these rights is protected. These rights primarily come from a federal law known as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Most states also have additional protections for autistic children in grade school. The rights laid out in IDEA consist of special education opportunities and early intervention. The law requires schools to evaluate children at an early age to determine whether they need additional services and support.
Every child is entitled to a free and appropriate public education – but an education that is appropriate for one child might not be appropriate for another with different needs. This means that, when necessary, the school must provide an educational plan tailored to a child’s special needs. Unfortunately, some schools, teachers, or administrators might push back against requests regarding accommodations for a child with autism. A special education lawyer can advocate for that child and ensure that they are treated fairly under the law.
Another way an attorney can help is by advocating for a child to learn in the least restrictive environment possible. In other words, a child has the right to be placed in a situation where they have the best chance to succeed. If they can participate in a specific activity along with the other children, the law requires that they have the opportunity to do so. Sometimes the best option for children with autism is to have a hybrid approach involving standard classroom education mixed with special instruction.
Skilled Guidance With IEP & Accommodations
One important way a special education lawyer could aid the family of a child with autism is through developing an Individualized Education Program, or IEP. An IEP offers children with autism a path toward obtaining a comprehensive education. The first step in this process is for a child to be evaluated by the school district for special needs. If the school determines that the child qualifies for these services, the next step will be to develop an IEP tailored to their learning style.
In many cases, accommodations are a necessary part of an IEP. Accommodations are changes to the standard way of assigning tasks in school to allow for a special needs child to complete them. For example, a child might need to take an altered form of a test or complete a slightly different assignment, allowing them a fair opportunity to succeed. These accommodations could provide the student with additional time or allow them to perform in a different setting. The ultimate goal is to ensure that a student has equal access to education no matter their disability.
An IEP is often about more than accommodations. It includes an array of documents and test results designed to help a student show what they are capable of. These plans can include a series of goals that span a number of years into the future. As a child’s goals change, the plan can change as well.
Important to Know:
Frequently Asked Questions
What should I do if I suspect my child has a disability or learning difference and needs support from school?
We at KJK believe that parents know their child best. Thus, if you believe that your child has a disability, in all probability you are correct. Learning problems can manifest very differently depending upon a number of factors: such as age of child, personality, type of disability and educational environment. It goes without saying that no two children are the same.
What is an IEP?
What is an MFE or ETR?
Students with disabilities who receive services under a federal law called the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act or IDEA. IDEA is a wonderful statute that has changed the learning landscape for students. However, the terms in the statute can be quite daunting at first. Many articles have rightfully referred to these terms as alphabet soup!
Each school has child find obligations under IDEA to determine if students have needs that should be evaluated and addressed. But, as stated above, don’t rely on a District to initiate the process. If you suspect that your child should be tested, speak up! Studies show that the earlier an intervention takes place, the easier it is to level the learning playing field for a child!
What happens if the school refuses to conduct an ETR on my child?
What is an IEE?
What resources can I turn to for help understanding IDEA?
Can I request an IEP team meeting if I believe my child's needs are not being met or my child's disability has changed?
Do I need an attorney to make an IEP? How can an attorney help me and/or my child?
Attorneys can help with each step in the process, including attending IEP meetings.
If I disagree with the school’s evaluation, what can I do?
My child has really struggled during the COVID-19 pandemic. What are my rights?
Can the school discipline my student with a disability if he or she breaks a rule?
Need More Information?
Read Our Blog
We represent many students of all ages with disabilities, and we make it a point to provide as much guidance in this area as we can. For example, our Special Education FAQ section answers many of the most common questions we hear from parents. But oftentimes, we...
KJK is proud to congratulate Student & Athlete Defense Co-Chair and Partner Susan Stone on being named Best Lawyers in America® Lawyer of the Year in the Education category for 2022. Only one attorney receives the “Lawyer of the Year” distinction in each...
In this episode of Real Talk, Student & Athlete Defense attorneys Susan Stone and Kristina Supler are joined by Jaclynn Bosley, owner and executive clinical director of Thrive Early Learning Center, to discuss intervention and therapy strategies for students...