8. Denial of Least Restrictive Environment

My first attempt at filing a state complaint was to try to find a way to get my son returned to his neighborhood school. (http://nichcy.org/schoolage/disputes/statecomplaint#summary)  His placement in the special school program was in a self-contained classroom. When he finally did arrive at school he stayed in the same classroom with a small number of students which was totally opposite from the his previous placement of the regular classroom with supports coming in.

I filed the complaint based on denial of least restrictive environment (LRE) with placement being as close to home as possible and waited for the ruling.  (http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/lre.osers.memo.idea.htm)  The state had sixty days to respond.

My son continued to take those long bus rides Imageevery day to get an education. The only redeeming factor throughout his ordeal was the teacher he had at the special school.  Her name was Jan Cook and she was phenomenal.  She taught him so many things but one of the most important was that not everything needed to be retained by rote memory. Instead she taught him how to find the information he needed when he needed it.

I continued to meet with the other parents and together we continued to lobby the School Board and listen to what they had to say, but their response always returned to the budget and difficulty of serving the children here.

I realized if I was ever going to have my son returned to his community school I would have to find a way to force the School District to do it.

I continued to consult with the Advocacy Center and was relentless in reading the laws and regulations both state (www.fldoe.org/ese/pdf/1b-stats.pdf) and federal. (http://nichcy.org/laws)

This entry was posted in Advocacy, Disability, Emotion, IEPs, Inclusion, Parent Involvement, Procedural Safeguards, Public School and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to 8. Denial of Least Restrictive Environment

  1. djoslin614 says:

    Thank you, Wilbur, for sharing your experiences out here. And thank you for all of the links to great information.

    I look forward to the next post!

  2. Wilbur hawke says:

    Thanks to Central Florida Parent Center for providing a forum from which to share my thoughts

    • Tom Adams says:

      Thanks for the post. It looks like we both have something in common. I would really like to add you as a friend on my facebook page, if you wouldn’t mind. Drop me line so we can swap stories.

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