Right now there are more than 100 lawsuits pending against San Diego Unified, filed on behalf of children receiving special education services, and that’s just what’s on the current calendar. Due to specific regulations for the timeline of these cases, many others have already been settled and moved off the calendar.
Perhaps this is why the Family Engagement Department is presenting a seminar with the Special Education Ombudsman – to preempt parents considering the legal route?
Students receiving special education services (students with IEPs) have been particularly hard hit with school closures. Their vulnerability is so well understood that California offered school districts extra funding to support these students. San Diego Unified took extra money to support these students and never opened its doors. When our County was in the Red Tier and schools were permitted to operate, San Diego Unified did little to offer an education to the very students it was obligated to serve.
In fact, SDUSD actively tried to get parents to sign away their rights to their child’s appropriate education. They sent out a waiver form to parents of children with IEPs and tried to pass it off as just some regular paperwork.
If you are a parent of a child with an IEP you need to know that right now the California School Board Association is lobbying on behalf of districts to waive their responsibility to provide a Free and Appropriate Education (FAPE – IEP legal term) to your child. If you want to understand your rights, please contact the attorney handling our class action. Then contact your state lawmakers.
In addition, please write us an anonymous letter about your family’s experience with distance learning. Many of you have told us how San Diego Unified has mismanaged your child’s IEP services. We would like to compile these stories to send to lawmakers and to the media. We won’t use any names. We will only copy and paste the body of the email. Therefore do not use anything that would identify you or your child in the body of the email unless you are comfortable with it being known.
Thanks to the Special Education Advocate Leaders for assisting with this data.