Is My Understanding Wrong?

Discussion in 'Special Ed 101' started by WSM, Feb 27, 2009.

  1. WSM

    WSM New Member

    The state/county are required to educate our children. If the psychologist/psychiatrist the public school sends us to does an evaluation, and the numbers add up so that the recommended course of action is child will do best in a residential therapeutic educational setting, does this mean the state/county/school district has to pay for the residential therapeutic schooling?

    Last year, difficult child was 3 points away from that recommendation--and my husband forgot to tell him all about the violent picture of him killing his sister and his head exploding, or about some of his self harming, etc...

    We are going to have him re evaluated this summer by the same guy and this time we are prepared with documentation, police reports, essays and pictures from difficult child. I think he'll be in the residential treatment catagory.

    And if he is, does the school system have to pay for it?
  2. Ropefree

    Ropefree Banned

    If his condition is impacting his ability to learn he should be covered by the Disability Act and IEP services. So I think that it is very much what the FAPE IDEA FAPE IEP is there to provide. Further, in my hottly contested opinion here, the best case senerio is to have what is needed for this student to learn and recieve what will teach this child what they do need to understand about themselves to have a safe life, a productive life, and a life that is as much as possible amoung others in society.
    It is by the study and sucessful treatment of any condition that our means of coping with and serving the needs of children and then adults who are aflicted with these conditions that is the point of mental health care and treatement, and the education rights of such children are in place to make certain that bias and distain for children and adults who by no fault of their own are needing these cares.
  3. jal

    jal Member

    If your school district cannot provide the supports for your child they must locate an appropriate education facility suited to your childs needs. I do not know if this would include a residential facility as I have no experience with that, but our SD couldn't provide what our difficult child needed, so with our approval of the program he attends a therapeutic school. The SD pays his tuition and the cost to transport him back and forth daily.
  4. WSM

    WSM New Member

    "If the student cannot learn..."

    I'm not sure what is considered 'not learning'. He gets D's thru A's and probably averages out to a C plus. So they might not consider that he's failing. He is learning, but he's so troubled.
  5. dadside

    dadside New Member

    I don't believe the local school system has to pay for whatever the psychologist they referred you to recommends. They may pay, but they wouldn't necessarily be bound by the recommendation. His report and recommendation are only one thing the school (IEP team, I assume) has to consider.

    The school is only obligated to provide suitable/appropriate accommodations and certain services to enable a child to learn. They are not obligated to provide the best. So, that a professional says that the child would do best in a certain setting doesn't mean that is the only way they can receive suitable/appropriate accommodations and services. So, don't ask for the best -- just for what is appropriate.

    I always wonder about any evaluation that comes out "3 points away" from any recommendation or conclusion, especially one involving mind processes. While I know there has to be a point of distinction, I think professional experience and judgment has to be used, not just a numeric scale. Of course, the school may want a quantified report to support some recommendation on which they are to act, but a couple of points one way or the other doesn't seem so critical - unless perhaps if the scale is 1 - 10.
  6. Sheila

    Sheila Moderator

    Points have nothing to do with it. Psychologists have nothing to do with-it. Recommendations from all professionals (including the school district's) are just that -- recommendations. All IEP placements are made by the IEP team (of which you are a part).

    An IEP placement should be the Least Restrictive Environment based on the child's needs. LRE for some kids is mainstreamed. For others it may be all Special Education classes. For others the LRE is theraputic day school or an Residential Treatment Center (RTC). Some need a mixture.

    It's often very difficult to get school district IEP members to agree to Residential Treatment Center (RTC). Sometimes it's because they think it's not needed; sometimes it's because they incorrectly believe everything in the world must be tried first; sometimes it's because the sd must pay for the educational portion of Residential Treatment Center (RTC).

    So, while technically the answer to your question is "yes," there are some caveats such as the IEP committee agreeing. Here again, the parent(s) is part of the team.

    Some people are under the impression that everybody gets a "vote" at the IEP team. Not true. There are only 2 votes -- one for the parent and one for the school district.

    I don't recall all your story, but another problem that parents run into when Residential Treatment Center (RTC) placement is needed is that the student is an angel at school and is making passing grades. If the disability doesn't impact education, it's hard to get any help from school.

    Your procedural safeguards should set out steps you can take if there's not a concensus at the IEP meeting. These include but are not necessarily limited to mediation, due process hearing, unilateral placement by parent, filing a complaint with-the sd, state education agency, OSEP, OCR and/or ADA.

    It's very important to have a paper trail when one starts filing complaints, due process, etc. He said/she said will get you nowhere. It's the primary reason that Marti and I harp on "send follow up letters," send via Certified Mail, etc. Paper trails, paper trails.

    Another handy tool for parents is to use a Parent Record of Proposal -- never leave home without them. lol School districts don't like it when you make a recommendation and it's rejected because "we don't do that here," "that's too expensive," etc. These are things that you won't find in the minutes of the meeting.

    There are certain steps a parent must take to do a unilateral placement. There's information on this at and . And again, parental options when there are disagreements should be spelled out in your Procedural Safeguards.

    Hope this helps.
  7. WSM

    WSM New Member

    Thank you.

    I'm collecting all the info I can find. This morning my husband is going to a 3 hour info meeting about parental rights under the law re ese students at the local university. It's being run by an atty.

    He's going with a list of questions.