Need advice. Is this legal?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Pencil Monkey, Aug 17, 2008.

  1. Pencil Monkey

    Pencil Monkey Devotee

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    Aug 17, 2008

    I had a student in my class last year who had some serious problems. The student was very defiant and would tell me "No" when asked to do things. THe student would ask to use the restroom 5 times in an hour. When told no the student would ask continuously. The student had some clear learning problems. Chunking and using all the strategies in the world were not enough to help this child. I did every thing I could think of. Every strategy in the book I tried with this kid until another teacher offered to try to work with the child. That child went to thier class and stayed the last half of the school year. This teacher also tried everything. We documented, documented, and documented. That teacher left at the end of the year and took all the documentation. Just before the other teacher left we had an SST meeting and recomended the child be tested for special education services. The mother refused, claiming she had never heard such a thing that there was a problem.
    We do not have a special education support staff in our small charter school. We had to call and beg someone from the county to come for that meeting. Now the paperwork is gone.
    The student needs to be retained in third grade because of failing CRCT scores. We have a meeting with the mom on Monday to tell her that we are going to retain her child.

    The point is, we do not have the staff to accomadate this child. Getting someone to come for an SST meeting was a nightmare and will be yet again. Even if we get her tested and an IEP, we don't have the staff to provide her the help she needs. This child needs serious one on one help. I am not diagnosing her but I believe she has some kind serious learning disability.

    In the meeting tommorow, is it legal to explain to the mom that our school does not have the resources to help this child? I don't want this child to suffer. In looking at her records mom has taken her from one school to the next just trying to hide her problems. I want to help her, but with lack of special education support its impossible.
     
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  3. Beth2004

    Beth2004 Maven

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    It is my understanding that every school receiving public funding must provide support for students with any kind of special needs. If that school is not equipped to support the child within their own building, they need to pay for bussing to send that child to the closest school that can support him/her.
     
  4. born2teach84

    born2teach84 Comrade

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    Do you have a teaching organization or union? If so CALL THEM...they would be the best people to give legal advice...it is different depending on states...
     
  5. Pencil Monkey

    Pencil Monkey Devotee

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    Aug 17, 2008

    thank you.
     
  6. born2teach84

    born2teach84 Comrade

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    I didn't mean to put call them in CAPPS hehe it seemed harsh...sorry I just don't mess with legal things unless I call them to make sure :)
     
  7. Go 4th

    Go 4th Habitué

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    I believe this is correct in GA too. Any school recieving public funds has to provide the supports needed to educate all students, within means.

    Good luck! Let us know how things go.
     
  8. Malcolm

    Malcolm Enthusiast

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    Read this. The big question is whether this applies to the student in question. The teacher cannot make the evaluation because she is not an expert. Getting the child evaluated is the responsibility of the parent. If she won't do it, I don't think there is an issue with 504. But then, I am not a lawyer.
     
  9. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Aug 17, 2008

    This is true here as well. I understand your frustration; it is so difficult when you feel that you can't provide a student with the support that they need. Unfortunately, if the parent does not agree to testing, there isn't much you can do. Outline, in a very non-judgemental way, what was done for the student last year, the reasons for retention, and the strategies that will be used this year. If the parent does agree to testing and the student is identified, you may then have some other options for placement if your school doesn't have the staff to support a special program.
     
  10. Proud2BATeacher

    Proud2BATeacher Phenom

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    Just make sure someone is taking notes during the meeting. I may even go as far as to ask the parent if it is okay to record the meeting, so that everyone can focus on her child rather than taking notes. If you get permission to record the meeting, make sure that you say so at the beginning of the recording, along with the date and time and everyone whom is present at the meeting.
     
  11. adventuresofJ

    adventuresofJ Comrade

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    Shouldn't this be a discussion that administration should be having with the parent?
     
  12. Yank7

    Yank7 Habitué

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    It is not illegal to express your opinion on what you feel is best for this child and why you feel this way. The problem is in most school systems the parent has to agree to have the child tested and if they refuse we are stuck.We had a fifth grader in school this past school year who was very violent threatened both students and teachers and constantly disrupted the class. It was obvious to everyone but the parent that the child needed to be evaluated and placed in special ed. However, since the parent refused to sign,no testing was done and this behavior continued all year. Through some miracle this child barely passed the state exams and was promoted to middle school.. Unfortunately,he will not be able to function there and I am afraid the situation is very dangerous for all who come in contact with him.
    Try your best to convince the parent to get help before it is too late.I hope you have better luck than we did.
     
  13. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    There's a grey area here...a charter school can to accept her and/or refuse to allow her back on behavior grounds. I know several charter schools in my area refuse admission based on behavior.

    I agree with the poster who said that this is really an issue that the admin needs to be dealing with.
     
  14. silverspoon65

    silverspoon65 Enthusiast

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    I think what makes this a tricky question is that it is a charter school. The neighborhood school is required to make accommodations or pay for the child to go to another school. However, this is not the neighborhood school. I am interested to see who would be responsible here.

    I teach at a public high school that students apply to get into. We are not the neighborhood school. If we cannot provide services for the child, I THINK they go back to their regular school and that school has to provide or find the services. Sometimes we share the kid - one school for academics, my school for vocational classes.
     
  15. Beth2004

    Beth2004 Maven

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    I also teach at a charter school and we are required to make any necessary accommodations for students on IEPs because we receive state and federal funding. Not only that, but with NCLB, parents are able to choose which school they would like their children to go to. It doesn't need to be their neighborhood schools, so I thought that whichever school the parents chose was the school responsible for making the accommodations.

    Different states have different requirements, though, and charter schools are not all run in the same way, so it could be different in GA.
     
  16. Ghost

    Ghost Habitué

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    With the reauthorization of IDEA, the school has it's hands tied about testing. Before, we could take them to due process to get the child tested and placed. Now, we deal with the child if they refuse. Do NOT say you don't have the resources to deal with the child! If you do so, then the school becomes responsible for obtaining the resources. I will also advise you not to say anything that would sound like you are diagnosing a problem (and don't suggest medication). That all said, the admin needs to address this, not the teacher. Can't you contact the other teacher to see if she still has the documentation??
     
  17. DallasTeacher

    DallasTeacher Companion

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    Teachers are not allowed to diagnosis students unless specifically trained. You must be very careful not to do so. Do not mention the school doesn't have the resources. The courts have ruled that EVERY child is entitled to a free and appropriate education. Explain in very specific terms what you have done to assist this child. Tell the mother that testing is in the best interest of her child. Preface it by explaining that her child was not successful last year and that you know SHE (the mom) wants the very best for her child. Don't let the county put you off. They have federal deadlines once the paperwork is signed and potential penalties for any failures.
     
  18. DallasTeacher

    DallasTeacher Companion

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    Charter schools most likely still get state funding and must follow federal guidelines. I've had parents refuse to have their child tested and if they continue in their refusal, I notify CPS. It is child abuse to allow a student to not receive services. Of course, when we meet with CPS the teaching team has all their ducks in a row with more than adequate documention to back up our point of needed testing. Never had a parent refuse once CPS makes a visit/call.
     
  19. TeacherC

    TeacherC Connoisseur

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    Is there anyway that you can get her pediatrician to come? We had a boy whose mother refused testing until she got advice from her son's doctor...not someone "from the school". He had severe ADHD problems, and we could all see it, but we (as teachers) couldn't address that- he could. I don't know about the rules with charter schools though. Good luck, I know how difficult parents can be!
     
  20. shouldbeasleep

    shouldbeasleep Enthusiast

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    In Georgia, the legal status of your charter school can be of two types: If your school is part of a district, than you can call on help from the district to service special needs children.
    Charter schools in thier own right (not part of a district) are responsible for all special education services.

    There is also some kind of partial-link to a district set-up in which the district is responsible for the testing, but the charter school is responsible for the services.

    In any case, if you are part of the district, the funds for special ed go to the district and your school would be eligible for a portion of them depending upon the number of special ed students.

    If you are a charter school independent of the districts, you are eligible for funding from the state.
     
  21. EMonkey

    EMonkey Connoisseur

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    The parent has refused to have her child go through the testing. You can not tell her that her child has a severe learning disability if the child has not been tested and come back with a confirmation of you and your fellow teacher's lay person opinions.

    You need to meet with the principal at your school before saying anything about having the child change schools. You need to say your opinion of the child's skills but it is an administrator's job to make the decisions to move a child or whether it is legally possible to move a child.

    You could reintroduce the idea of testing the child.

    My understanding is that charter schools do have the ability to pick and choose children who attend their school. I thought each charter school has different policies as to whether or not the school uses that choice.
     
  22. shouldbeasleep

    shouldbeasleep Enthusiast

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    I have a feeling that your answer lies in what the mission is for your charter school. Is it designed for this type of student? Perhaps the admin can discuss the idea that the school is not a good fit for the child if the school is set up for students within a specialized population of which the child is not a part of. For example, gifted charter schools, international language charter schools, etc.

    If the parent refuses testing, and won't consider a different school and setting, you'll have work with the child in the same way a special ed teacher would. At least as much as you can.

    It's difficult. Parents are afraid of "labeling", and so deny the trained services of professionals.
     
  23. kimrandy1

    kimrandy1 Enthusiast

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    Aug 19, 2008


    While it may not be illegal to express opinions, it may be unwise. For instance, here, if we even suggest that a child visit a pediatrician (for an ADHD screening or an eye test, for example) the school can be held responsible for the cost of the exam. If we suggest that the child need a more intensive placement, the school system may be legally responsible to pay for an intensive private program. So, tread carefully.
    Kim
     

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