Monthly Archives: June 2009

The Wheels on the Bus: Transportation Under the IDEA

Published on June 29, 2009 by Jennifer Laviano

Transportation for children with special education needs is crucial.  Just think about it:  virtually all kids who do not have disabilities have public transportation available to them to attend school.  NOT having it available for students with special needs blatantly separates those with disabilities from a fundamental aspect of education.  In addition, for many families, […]

How You Can Help Your Special Education Advocate or Attorney

Published on June 28, 2009 by Jennifer Laviano

If you have decided to retain the services of either a special education attorney or a non-attorney advocate, you are about to embark upon a difficult, but hopefully successful, venture together.  Most professionals charge for their time, and many do so by the hour.  Therefore, if you have made the decision to hire such an […]

The DSM-V: How Will It Impact Special Education?

Published on June 27, 2009 by Jennifer Laviano

I am not even remotely a mental health professional.   I majored in English Literature and went on to become an attorney.  However, in my special education law practice in Connecticut, I brush up against psychologists and psychiatrists every day, and rely on them to let me know what, if any, disabilities my clients have, and […]

“Kids with ODD Aren’t Eligible for Services”

Published on June 26, 2009 by Jennifer Laviano

As a parents’ special education attorney in Connecticut, I hear outrageous statements that parents are told by their school districts on an almost daily basis.  But, sometimes, I am told something that passes the realm of outrageous, and crosses into ridiculous. Such statements mislead or misrepresent the school’s legal obligations, and always in a way […]

“STOP the IEP Meeting, I Want to Get Off!”

Published on by Jennifer Laviano

how to do yoga at home As I near the end of a brutal IEP “Season,” I am humbled, once again, by how my clients do it.  It is one thing for me, whose job it is to represent them at these meetings and to make sure their rights are being protected, to feel overwhelmed […]

What You Don’t Know CAN Hurt You

Published on June 24, 2009 by Jennifer Laviano

One of the most important things that I do in my practice as a special education attorney is to try to empower parents of children with special education needs.  I tell my clients up front that one of my main goals of representation is to get them to a place where they either don’t need […]

Forest Grove Decided…and The Spin Begins

Published on June 22, 2009 by Jennifer Laviano

how to lose weight for men Today was a great day for children with special needs.  The United States Supreme Court issued a Decision in the case of Forest Grove School District v. T.A.  In the Ruling, the Court found in a 6-3 Opinion that parents of a child with a disability who are forced […]

A Father’s Legacy to Special Education Advocacy

Published on June 21, 2009 by Jennifer Laviano

On this Father’s Day, I can’t help but be a little sad.  Much as I will try to spend today letting my husband know how much our daughters and I appreciate him as a father, today is the anniversary of my own father’s death.  Seven years ago today, and in many ways, it feels like […]

Unseemly IEP Team Member: “The Liar”

Published on June 20, 2009 by Jennifer Laviano

“The Liar” Let me start by saying that, while I have unfortunately seen my share of dishonesty on the part of many IEP Team Members over the many years I have been practicing special education law on behalf of children, usually it comes in the form of misleading comments, convenient omissions, or minor misrepresentations when […]

Pompous Circumstance

Published on June 19, 2009 by Jennifer Laviano

This weekend, in high school auditoriums and on lawns across the country, graduation ceremonies will be held to honor those students who have accumulated the necessary credits to receive a diploma.  Families will gather, grandparents will cry, and kids who have gone to school together for years will congratulate one another on a job well […]