Skip to comments.Court Rules Against Special Ed. Parents
Posted on 11/14/2005 10:10:08 AM PST by SmithL
WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court ruled Monday that parents who demand better special education programs for their children have the burden of proof in the challenges.
Retiring Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, writing for the 6-2 court, said that when parents challenge a program they have the burden in an administrative hearing of showing that the program is insufficient. If schools bring a complaint, the burden rests with them, O'Connor wrote.
The ruling is a loss for a Maryland family that contested the special education program designed for their son with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.
The case required the court to interpret the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act, which does not specifically say whether parents or schools have the burden of proof in disputes. The law covers more than 6 million students.
(Excerpt) Read more at sfgate.com ...
ADHD is a disability now?
They needed the Supreme Court to settle that obvious point?
I tend to agree as public school education should not always be life skills education as is what normally is the case with parents of severely disabled children. Parents are responsible for life skills and how being taught to eat sleep etc. falls in the public school education domain is beyond me.
So basically should public education include life skills? And if not, should public school funds support say 100 K a year education for parents to send their disabled child away?
Its a fine line I am sure.
As the parent of a *clinically diagnosed* AD/HD child (two, actually), I agree wholeheartedly that at least 50% of all *behaviorally diagnosed* cases of AD/HD (those promulgated by teachers, etc.) are wrong.
Oh - and the correct therapy (read: learning how to apply one's own ability to filter out distraction) has eliminated the need for even minimal pharmaceutical intervention at all in my kids.
But,but,but.. This was the 'hyperactivity' version!!!!!
Yeah, who were the dissenters?
DING! We have a winner
Justices Ruth Vader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer wrote separate dissents.
It always was a fake disease.
Male initiative is the Left's biggest target. (Ever see Clockwork Orange?)
Wow! Maybe Justice Roberts is knocking heads with Kennedy and Souter - they voted the right way this time!
It is definitely a victory for common sense! There is an incredible amount of abuse when it comes to classifying students as learning disabled and getting them into special ed programs.
One of my friends teaches public school in a town where this is a real problem. The school has a large population of students who are lower-income blacks and Hispanics. Many of these students struggle in school and are put into remedial/special ed classrooms.
The district also has a good number of wealthy white students who also struggle in school. From her perspective as a teacher, my friend has observed that few of these "disabled" white students have any disability beyond a poor work ethic and being spoiled rotten. But the parents of these students are able to get their children classified as learning disabled. The students then get personal aides and are able to remain in regular and sometimes even honors classrooms!
Although many of these white parents are big time liberals who squawk about how racist Bush is because of the Katrina debacle, they'll do anything they can to keep their own spoiled kids from sitting in a classroom with a bunch of minorities. It is not uncommon for these people to threaten to sue the district if it tries to crack down on their children's poor behavior and performance. The situation is just out of control and hopefully this ruling will give the district a little more ammo in the fight against this nonsense.
Has been for years.
Many many ADHD kids receive SSI benefits of $579.00 per month (you tax dollars) for having ADHD or some other "learning disability."
Every ADD or ADHD diagnosis is more money for the school. So when the school has input, they are motivated to get a positive diagnosis. Now this case sounds like a real behavioral problem, but I think many times it's just a bunch of bunk.
They get social security money? I know a kid with spina bifida who gets the money, but I had no idea an ADHD kid could get it too. Wow!
A lot of it, too.
Based on the above statement, Ginsburg seems to be missing the point of this case. Specifically:
An IEP is written for a student, after an evaluation of that child's needs. The assessment and the IEP are written by the same person and approved by the administration (at least in Contra Costa County, and likely in other districts). The IEP is written by a professionally trained and licensed therapists, the goals and program is designed to attain certain results, based on that child's capabilities.
If the IEP is not adequate, then the results will not be achieved (yes there are many variables at work here). But the people in position to best evaluate the overall results, are the parents. That is what this case seems to be saying.
I think in my friend's case, the school district would prefer there were fewer ADD diagnosis. Allowing these kids all kinds of special privliges causes a lot of harm in the long run. It does no one any favors to put a child who will not behave and will not attempt to do work in a regular or even honors classroom. The worst aspect of it all is the truancy issue. Some of these "disabled" students just can't stay in school the whole day, they must either come in late or leave early - without permission. If the school tires to discipline a student for all these unexcused absences, the parents threaten to sue - after all, the poor child is disabled, so he can't be expected to show up at eight each morning like everyone else. It puts the school in a horrible bind because when a student is truant, the school is still liable for his or her safety. If a student cuts out early and then gets, say, hit by a car, the parents can - and will - sue the school district to kingdom come. So the school is damned if they do and damned if they don't.
How do you type the sound of money washing down the drain? Special Ed should've been called Special Fund.
Sounds reasonable to me.
Are you joking? Where did you hear about this?
I no longer teach chemistry in High School. It is impossible and dangerous to teach this subject with seven special education students and no assistant-every lesson plan and lab must be altered in order to compensate for eight different types of learning. Lab is just plain scary. At my last school, some of these kids broke into the lab and killed some of the animals.
Pat your self on the back for doing a good job.
Thank you for those links.
My son has the misfortune of being in a (3rd grade) class with a student whose parents are just too lazy to discipline him, so they've gotten him diagnosed as "ADD."
They tolerate his disruptive behavior, with a "Now Bradley, we don't act like that," when what the boy really needs is a swift kick in the pants!
Are you talking about all Special Ed or just the ADD?
For a change, let's have a little "empathy" for the other 98 or 99% of the kids who are normal but who have to put up wtih the undisciplined monsters in their classes - and who, often enough, are part of a "group punishment" arising from the actions of the "ADD" kid.
How do you explain to an 8-year-old who thinks it's unfair that the whole class has to do without recess for a week because little Bradley was acting up?
Not every child who has ADHD is an "undisciplined little monster".
I watch "SuperNanny"... every week! The same-age children in some of the shows are not unlike my own at times, and her techniques are helping us, when applicable.
But, if I had a doctor diagnose her as ADHD, I'd probably seek more information as well as a 2nd opinion. I've never heard ADHD considered a disability, and it's "in" our family: unfortunately IMHO used as a crutch. And I have what IS considered a disability, that most people would never question: MS. I'm one of the lucky ones, who has it but you can't tell by looking at me most of the time, so even I grow uncomfortable with being called "disabled" when there are so many who are worse off than I.
On another note: It seems to me that the parents of this child in the article could have better spent their money on specialized education, than on an attorney all the way to the Supreme Court? It isn't stated that I recall, but I doubt this case was free.
Exactly what we are striving for :). I admire you.
Are you joking? Where did you hear about this?
Too true, known in the welfare community as 'crazy money', Mothers encourage their children to act out. No obligation on the parent to even use the money for their child.
Nah - Admire my kids. They're the ones that worked their butts off to achieve that milestone!
I am with you!! Hallelujah, a teeny glimmer of common sense from SCOTUS. Amazing.
I would love to see statistics on the amount of money spent on Special Ed. My 'friend' demanded that her son be sent to a Really Special school across town (Los Angeles). You'd think there would be something an hour closer, but NO. A taxi picked this young man up, delivered him across town (one hour, one way) and returned him home at the end of the day. On OUR TAX DOLLAR.
Our school district is totally impoverished due to many reasons and some incredibly stupid decisions. But this took the cake, to me.
Your kid and my kid are just as "special" as these kids, yet we can't get custom-tailored programs to help our kids reach their potential. Why not?
Another question: If you had an extra $100,000 to spend on educating a kid, who would you choose to spend it on, a bright kid who might cure cancer someday, or a kid who will be lucky if he ever learns to tie his shoes? (Before you flame me, I am NOT saying that slow kids should not be educated or should be warehoused or ignored, just that we need to have a little common sense in the distribution of our assets.)
We need to examine our priorities in this country. The public education system would be a good place to start.
Go Irish, indeed! (Aren't they looking FINE this year?) Interesting your report re schools/ learning disabilities. The kids I know -- who grew up alongside my son -- the ADHD ones came from incredibly chaotic families. That the school district should have to provide a one-on-one 'attendant' for these kids sickens me. Should be the same across the board. Besides which the kids are being propagandized. yuck!
WHAT?? They receive SSI payments for being wiggley? WHAT????
I think everything you said is very reasonable and intelligent. Your beautiful little child is probably just normal in the range of her specific personality type. I think you are wise to look for discipline adivce first. Some kids are more challenging, and sometimes it is just a matter of trying out different techniques and being firm but loving. Do not yield to her control no matter what, but stay calm and sweet. That whole eye contact thing is big, plus talking slowly and being very specific and very consistent. Three is very young. You have lots of time.
I'm with you. As the parent of a child with severe ADHD, I cannot even describe the difficulties we have, DESPITE the discipline we impose in our home, (regardless of what many of the posters here today think). Some days I don't know how we're going to make it through school. Frankly, I knew I shouldn't have even clicked on this thread. I knew what I was going to read. I used to be one of those people who thought it didn't even exist and that it was basically a discipline problem or a way for teachers to maintain control of little boys. But when you have a 3 year old who can't even concentrate long enough to learn his colors no matter how many times you go over it, you realize that there's a problem.
I know one of these moms. She's actually my sister in law. She taught her daughter (who has no disability other than being a lazy, overweight couch potato) how to work the system to get her deadbeat pay. So sad when your only goal in life is to sit around and watch tv on someone elses dime. I wouldn't be able to sleep at night if I did this. I would feel so ashamed!
"Crazy checks" have been all the vogue since 1992. Since that time, billions have been given to "slow learners," etc., as well as those kids suffering from maladies like "oppositional defiant disorder."
Believe it or not, her first hubby, now dead, was the 'man with no face' featured on Rippleys, Larry King, Maury and South Park. (and yes, he beat her too!)