Process on getting district to cover alternative school


i have posted here in the past but it's been a while. I won't rehash everything. In short 16 y/o daughter started missing a lot of school and being defiant. School district showed us two alternative schools which she refused to go to. Then it was recommended residential. I disagreed with this and no good ones in our state. So had home instruction and shown 2 more schools. She chose one and went for 3 weeks. Then they terminated the admission stating she was not participating or doing therapy there. This was news to me since they never said anything to me when I went to pick her up. I found out by reading her IEP the school sent me after failed placement. So back to home instruction. They showed us 2 other schools which were not appropriate for her but felt I had no other options. We then looked into a private school that handled kids with anxiety and other social phobias. Not therapeutic but had some resources in school. She interviewed but came across shy and did not make good eye contact. They felt would not succeed well. They said to revisit in August. So when August rolled around I made her call school and leave a message. Well she ended up getting a second interview and was accepted. It was like a switch turned on. They said she showed a lot of improvement and were impressed she called over summer. So now she starts next week and am borrowing money from family to cover cost. This school is cheer than the schools our district was recommending but feel she will do better here. Now need to tell school we are going a different route and start due process. She has been evaluated multiple times and each time they all said needed intense therapy. She has started taking medications which has helped and is doing therapy outside of school. Any one have experience with getting a school district to cover cost of school that is not recommend. I'm hoping she does great here and proves everyone wrong but know it will be a battle to get coverage even thought 20,000 cheaper than other schools.


Staff member
I have no personal experience with this but I did find a couple of resources that may be helpful to you.

Attached to this post is the pdf Special Education in Alternative Education Programs. ERIC Digest E585 which "identifies seven essential elements of effective programs for students in alternative programs because they have dropped out, are at risk for dropping out, or have behavior disorders that require special education outside the general education setting."

And the following links:

When must the public school pay for tuition to allow a child to go to a private school? - ldonline

Special Education: School District Must Pay Private School - Lawyers

New and Alternative Sources of Student Support and Funding - US Dept of Education


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