Special Education/placement/assesment


my son is 7, he was forced out of his home school when he was 6 and forced into Special Ed a year ago and placed into an in district CARES program, they called it "therapeutic school" with a cement walled isolated room, where they put my son up to 10 times per day. They said they could not provide support at his home school, like bell to bell , special ed teacher...they do not do anything different now, that they could have not done there. He has full AHDH. Asked district for an IEE last year, but ignored me, so they did their own without the academic evaluation and plaed him , based on: they said no concerns in that area. He was placed in a class with kids who had some or more severe disabilities and my son did not understand why they do what they do. He always tested above average especially in math and reading.Now he is average. Once the right medication was found he was doing good, still he was doing same curriculum in class over and over causing behavior trouble for not sitting still, not wanting to do work, talking, goofing, being impulsive...he started math back in Gen Ed.
With the new school year he was placed with the severe kids again, a month later the school said oops, and put him back into two gen Ed classes from one day to another without any support and he was not doing well. The medication was not working right and he was refusing some work, talk, disrupt the class. While under this stress they realized he was never academically tested, so they did it, which showed above grade level especially in math. The school psychologist stated he does well when he is stimulated, hand-on and gets an extra push from an adult to encourage him to do it. his class is slow and not stimulating at all. But his behavior was based on how he was these last 4 months, they used CPI, restraint, hurt him physically with bruises and nail marks to stop the hyperactive behavior when he was running around with a lunchbox in his hand. Now, with the medicine not working, teachers not communicating about different rules in different classes, so he was keep getting in trouble and got a bad review. For the last 3 weeks we got the right medicine, he is doing good, but not in Gen Ed classes. I asked for an Aid to go with him to Gen Ed just to be there if he needs redirection, break...he is pretty much down to the talks too much, might not wait for his turn to answer, refuses to write if it seems a lot for him, get too excited and can not settle down right away. I can not get the school/district see he just needs an Aid in a Gen Ed class with IEP and he would do great or even in a gifted program. So they will not give him an Aid to go with. Don't even try. He was never allowed to test for the gifted program, and I do not know how to find a school- I could make the district pay for- for gifted kids with disability like his, a place to test him as he is on the right medicine now and we do not have those behavior issues...I can not afford one, they ignore pretty much all my requests, suggestions. My son is going crazy from the child who makes noises in his class the whole day, their solution was to move the tables more apart. Instead of an Aid, they are hiring a Para Pro, second in class, but they would not give anybody to go with him into a Gen Ed class, so he is not in one. They say either this or nothing. I have heard about twice exceptional schools, but can not find one. I am close to Chicago, IL.
Any suggestions? I did not want a due process, I know a lot of people say that, but this district got rid of my son once, they are trying it again, because I advocate him, and I am too much for them. I do not yell, i do not curse, but I do write, a lot. I can not afford an attorney anyway, nobody would take upon when he got hurt, or for all the lies and threats per district, and they have theirs in our meetings. We have a monthly meeting to see how he is doing, but his teacher does not participate.
Thank you for your time.

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The school is required to get your signature confirming your accepting of his IEP. You have the right to not agree and refuse to sign it. They also must have you sign an Assessment Plan before they can assess him. It sounds to me that you need an Advocate who knows your rights and will fight for your son. Your district should have tested your son before his first IEP (intellectual capability and academic performance as well as in all other areas of suspected disability). They are required to retest him every 3 years. You can ask for assessments sooner if you feel they are needed. You also have the right to make an audio recording of all IEP meeting (you have to notify the district in writing that you are going to do this at least one school day in advance of the IEP). I always record the IEP I attend. I don't understand how the district "got rid of your son once?" They can't change his classroom/school placement without you signing the IEP agreeing.

The law requires that each student be placed in the Least Restrictive Environment. The district should have considered placing your son in general education classes with a one-to-one aide before putting him a SDC classes. You need to push for an aide. This is where an Advocate can be of help. It is always an uphill fight to get one because it costs the district money. Has the OT evaluated your son for sensory issues? This must be done. The OT should also help your son to find fidgets that help him stay focused in class.

You have the right to file a Compliance Complaint with your State's office of Education. What you can report are failures to properly implement his IEP. It sound to me that placing him in a room by himself should not be called for in his IEP. It it is, then you should not sign the IEP.  

The education laws are tricky and require someone who is knowledgeable to assist you. The school district realized that you don't know the law and they are taking advantage of this. In the end filing for Due Process may be needed to change things. But this can be tricky. You are going up against a lawyer that handles these cases for school districts all the time. Parents that are not represented, loose most of the cases they file. You have to be able to prove what you present before a judge will rule in your favor.

Having a monthly meeting without the teacher being present is ridiculous. Have you visited your son's class? You have the right to see him in his classroom.

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Tim Runner


Questions concerning special education: IEP, assessments, Due Process, mediation, resolution conference, federal law, state law, qualifying for services, residential treatment, special day classes, resource specialists, procedures, having your child assessed, adaptive PE, speech & language, non-public school, FAPE, and tuition reimbursement.


I have been an education advocate representing students and parents for six years. My experience includes: representing my clients in IEPs, SSTs, Due Process, review assessment results for my clients, and mediations. I have represented clients with learning disabilities, autism, Downs Syndrome, cognitively challenged, emotional problems, learning disabilities, ADD/ADHD, and physical disabilities. I have also represented clients to County Mental Health Departments and Regional Centers. My clients range from pre-school to college students in many states.

I have a degree in Mathematics from the University of California with minors in Psychology and Physics. I also studied applied statistics in psychology at the graduate level. I have taught college classes, conducted seminars, written articles for various publications, and testified as an expert witness.

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