Educating children is important work that has ramifications for the future. In New York and across the country, children are entitled to be educated in the public school system. When a child has special educational needs, their local school district must provide them with appropriate educational services to meet their individual situation.
Depending on the district and the resources available within the community, a child with special education needs may be underserved by the offerings of their public school. In such situations, children may be sent to private or other schools so that they are able to be educated fairly and appropriately. Who bears the costs of these changes can vary greatly on how the term appropriate education is defined.
This post will discuss appropriate education services and what happens when parents and schools disagree on what is right. This post is not legal advice and should not be applied to specific special education cases. All special education law questions should be directed to lawyers who know and understand New York education law.
Appropriate educational services
Whether educational services are appropriate for a specific child is subjective. Every child’s needs are dependent upon their own learning situation. What readers must understand is that under the law, appropriate educational services do not guarantee that children will receive the best possible educational services for their particular educational situation. All children are entitled to free appropriate public education, not the best education possible for their unique situation.
When schools and parents disagree about appropriateness
It is not uncommon for families in school districts to disagree about what constitutes appropriate educational services for special education students. Families may request hearings to have their concerns assessed and to workout their differences with their local school districts. However, if a school cannot provide a student with free appropriate public education, parents can send their child to a private school to be educated. They may then seek to have the private school tuition reimbursed by the public school district due to its inability to provide appropriate services.
Finding a school that can provide a child with appropriate educational services can be complicated. Whether it is a public school failing to meet its duty or a private school that must be paid through reimbursement, dealing with special education issues can be hard on parents. They can lighten their burdens by seeking the council of trusted education lawyers to help them with their special education legal needs.