Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Supreme Court to tackle a divisive issue: public schools' responsibility to children with disabilities

The L.A. Times reports:
The Supreme Court will take up a potentially momentous education case on Wednesday and try to clarify the rights of the nation’s 6.7 million schoolchildren with disabilities.

Long-standing federal law says these children have a right to a “free appropriate public education,” but schools, courts and parents have been divided over what this means in practice.

Does it mean, for example, that a school must merely offer a minimal special program with “some educational benefit” to the child, as a federal appeals court in Denver ruled? Or instead, do these children have a right to “make significant educational progress,” as lawyers for the outgoing Obama administration contend.

The dispute over the proper legal standard goes beyond the classroom and carries a huge price tag for both parents and school districts.
The U.S. Supreme Court: ready to be your local school board.