5 Reasons, Why your Child in Special Education May Not be Getting FAPE, and How you Can Help Your Ch

By: JoAnn Collins

This article will discuss 5 reasons why your child with disabilities may not be receiving a free appropriate public education (FAPE). Also discussed, how to advocate for FAPE for your child.

Does your child receive special education services and you wonder if
they are receiving an appropriate education? This article, will
discuss 5 reasons why your child may not be receiving a free
appropriate public education. And also, what can you do about it?
There is a lot that you can do to ensure a free appropriate public
education for your child.

Reason 1: Many special education personnel have extremely low
expectations, for children with disabilities. You must have high
expectations for your child, just because they are not learning, does
not mean that they can't. They may need to be taught a different way.

Reason 2: Some special education personnel limit or refuse to provide,
educational and related services that children with disabilities need.
Some special education personnel will even deny that a child has
autism, so that they do not have to provide more intense special
education services. It is your job as a parent to fight for the
services that your child requires. Try to meet other parents, of
children with disabilities, in your school district. Help each other
advocate, and attend each other's IEP meetings. Together you will be a
strong group.

Reason 3: The curriculums, that some school districts use to teach
children with disabilities, do not work. Special education personnel
are often reluctant to change methodology, even if the child is not
learning. Investigate different curriculums, for your child's
disability. Join disability organizations and meet other parents. This
will allow you to share information with each other, what works.

Reason 4: Parents, are often forced to pay for independent
educational evaluations (IEE's), to prove that their child needs
certain special education services. If a parent must pay for an IEE,
to ensure that their child receives a free and appropriate public
education, then the education is no longer free. If your school
district evaluates your child, and you disagree with the evaluation
(or the way it is interpreted), then the Individuals with Disabilities
Education Act (IDEA), gives you the right to have an Independent
Evaluation at Public Expense. My book Disability Deception has an
entire chapter on IEE's that will give you more information on this
subject.

Reason 5: Many school districts suspend children with disabilities,
for behavior that is part of their disability. Educate yourself on
what IDEA requires as far as behavior/discipline. Special education
personnel can suspend a child up to 10 days.

Within 10 days of a decision to change a child's placement they must
convene a manifestation determination meeting. This meeting is being
held to determine if the behavior is part of your child's disability.
If it is, they must do certain things to include developing a positive
behavior plan. If they determine that the behavior is not part of your
child's disability, then they can discipline them as they would a non
disabled child. You can file for a due process hearing, if you
disagree with the school districts manifestation determination
decision.

By knowing why most children do not receive FAPE, you can advocate
hard for your child. They are depending on you, because they may not
be able to stand up for themselves.

JoAnn Collins is the mother of two adults with disabilities, and has
been an advocate for over 15 years, helping other families. She is the
author of the recently published book Disability Deception; Lies
Disability Educators Tell and How Parents Can Beat Them at Their
Own Game. For a free newsletter send an E mail to:
JoAnn@disabilitydeception.com. For a link to more free articles go to:
http://www.disabilitydeception.com

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