School boards are constantly challenged to effectively meet the needs of students with disabilities. With numerous federal and state laws and regulations that affect districts and ever evolving judicial and administrative interpretations of those laws and regulations, it is crucial that boards secure competent counsel to assist them in the timely and appropriate implementation of these legal mandates.
We have extensive experience advising school boards regarding the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, and corresponding state laws, and routinely consult with administrators, teachers, therapists, and school psychologists concerning boards’ obligations to properly identify, evaluate, and serve children with disabilities who reside in their districts.
Our services include:
- Developing and reviewing Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) and Section 504 Plans, including representing districts at team meetings;
- Due process hearings and subsequent appeals;
- Responding to investigations by the Ohio Department of Education; and
- Responding to investigations by the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights.
We find that many issues can be resolved without costly hearings and unpleasant confrontations with parents. By using creative problem solving and open communication, the concerns of parents and advocates can be met effectively while satisfying the board’s obligations under federal and state law.
In those instances where matters cannot be amicably resolved, we are zealous representatives for boards through any adversarial process.