My Rights & her IEP: UPDATED

Discussion in 'Special Ed 101' started by JJJ, Oct 1, 2007.

  1. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    I have a few questions about what I have the right to do...

    These all relate to Kanga who is currently attending a shortened school day at the next district over as a Special Education coop student in the Communication Disorders program.

    1. The school is pushing hard for her to attend full day. I do not want her to attend full day because I believe that it would be detrimental to her mental health. (There is no self-contained option for 1st & 2nd period at this school.) Do I have the right to refuse to allow her to attend full day? If so, where is my legal support for that?? (i.e. do I declare that I am homeschooling those 2 subjects? just deny consent?)

    I'm 99% sure I will have a letter from her therapist & psychiatrist stating that they feel that mainstreaming for academic subjects would be detrimental to her mental health and possibly lead to a recurrance of suicidal ideation.

    2. Since they cannot change her placement without my consent (right?) would going from a partial day to a full day with academic mainstreaming be considered a placement change? Can they take me to Due Process over it? or do I just win?

    3. The social worker assigned to the Special Education kids is an idiot. She actually told me that they don't have bullying at their school (right, about 1,000 junior high kids and not one is a bully, I want whatever they're putting in the water.) The social worker assigned to the regular ed kids (who Kanga also sees due to her IEP calling for daily social work.) seems competent (she is new so I don't have a good feel yet, but so far seems good).

    Can I refuse to allow the Special Education social worker to see Kanga?
  2. Martie

    Martie Moderator


    Be very careful. There are changes in the 2004 law that allow parents to refuse EVERYTHING, but then normal discipline applies and you do not want that.

    Rarely does someone ask a question that I have a direct been there done that, but you just did. Ex-difficult child needed to attend school half-days....(he had an IEP but only social work services due to no academic issues--fortunately she was good) The school district was MOST uncooperative until his psychiatrist wrote a charming letter saying that full day attendance would be be harmful to him, might increase his depression (and suicidal ideation), AND was AGAINST HIS MEDICAL ADVICE. I live in a community full of lawyers and other litigious people. I hope you do, too, because it is the implied threat of liability in the doctor's statement that got me what I wanted.

    Going from part day to full day is a change of placement: they need your consent.

    I would try asking for a different SW and if that is denied, then withdraw consent for this "related service." You may do that and keep other services. You DO NOT have the right to decide on staffing....that is why I suggested you ask for a change.

    Good your instincts....The half day program kept ex-difficult child in public school in the LRE for two more years. He eventually had to go to EGBS, but it was much better for him to go at 14 than 12 would have been.

    Best to you,

  3. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    Well, they have denied removing the problem social worker from Kanga's case. I need to withdraw permission for the related service of social work. This stinks because Kanga really needs social work at school.
  4. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member


    Well, I withdrew consent for social work at school because they refused to remove Ms. Incompetent Social Worker. Surprisingly (not) she showed up at the IEP meeting with a letter stating that Kanga had met all of her IEP goals in social work and it was no longer recommended. Wow, then why does her psychiatrist & therapist think she is still very ill with school as a contributing factor??@$#%?? Luckily, I saw that coming and had a formal letter stating my displeasure with her work and that I had removed my consent for social work services because they would not provide a different social worker but that I still felt very strongly that Kanga needs COMPETENT social work at school.

    The school has sent me a letter telling me that once they review the letter from her therapist/psychiatrist they will call another IEP meeting to discuss her return to a mainstream 1st and 2nd period.

    I'm working on a nice professional reply but the jist of it will be:

    "Listen, I have been very nice up to this point. You are not listening. I do not trust you with my daughter's mental health. As a district -- and some of you as individuals -- have not demonstrated the competence that I demand. You stand behind clearly incompetent staff. My daughter still cannot read despite all the praising you did of this program. You don't listen, requiring me to say the same thing over and over again, year after year. You won't wear me down. I AM A WARRIOR MOM. I have warned you that I am looking at a unilateral placement into a private school for summer school. If they are successful with her, you can bet your bottom dollar that I will sue for her placement in their school for next year.

    Kanga has twice "failed" while mainstreamed for social studies and science (4th & 6th grade). I do not believe your assurances that this time will be different. Especially because the Special Education teacher is sitting at the IEP meetings saying she can't give anymore support during the mainstreaming because she has kids in 12 different mainstream classes.

    If you want to waste my time with more 3 hour IEP meetings in which you all repeat yourselves, agree with each other and refuse to comprehend what I am saying, I will sit there. And at the end of the 3 hours, I will refuse to change her placement. Co-op staff will threaten to go the "legal route". I will turn to my district rep and ask her if she is prepared to use district resources to pursue a due process hearing that she knows I will drag out as long as possible (heck we only have 18 months left, I might be able to drag it out until she graduates) and even if the district wins, they lose because I will pull her from the public school system at that time. My district rep will decline to file a due process. And we are back at the beginning. Will you force us to repeat this process every 2 months? Do you like missing class that much?

    You have failed my daughter. At this point I am trying to minimize the damage until she gets to 9th grade and we change districts."
  5. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    Oh, I also had to increase her outside therapy to compensate for the loss of social work at school. So now I have to drive Kange to the therapist once a week before school in addition to her monthly appointments with psychiatrist and additional as needed ones with therapist.
  6. I'm going crazy!!!

    I'm going crazy!!! New Member

  7. Martie

    Martie Moderator

    I understand where you are coming from completely, but please change the "sue" language because you have to exhaust administrative remedies before you can go into court....I do not think they will want to take you to Due Process because you are a :warrior: mom.

    If you are considering unilateral placement, get competent legal advice on crossing every t and dotting every i, or they will be able to defeat you.

    Best to you,

  8. slsh

    slsh member since 1999


    One of the things IL got popped for the last time OCR checked us for compliance with IDEA was failure to provide psychiatric services to students.

    While I understand you withdrew consent for Ms. Incompetent, I'd continue to campaign for an appropriate SW for her. There's enough recent discussion in the state I think to win this one. Something else that might help you is the best practices in SW booklet put out by ISBE. I love it when ISBE puts these out because I have yet to run into any school district who actually follows best practices. While these are not laws and are not enforceable, it's rather entertaining to watch staff squirm as they are forced to admit they do not follow best practices as recommended by ISBE.

    Sorry you're still fighting this junk. I hope that the HS district will be better for you guys - hopefully it will be a new co-op as well (or better yet, she won't require co-op services - fingers crossed!!!).
  9. Sheila

    Sheila Moderator

    Great letter for releasing frustration! But I think you need to tone it down before you send it. (I can assure you that I've written more than one letter for "therapy." lol)

    You never know what the future may bring.... You may need this letter as "evidence" that you expressed your concerns and presented recommendations to the school district in a reasonable manner. You wouldn't want it presented as "evidence" that mom is inflexible and unreasonable -- and that's probably the spin that would be put on it.
  10. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    Oh. no. That was the venting version. I'm working on a professional one that I will send.