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Is your child with special needs ready to graduate?

Written by Mariann Crincoli, Esq. As a child approaches his or her 18th birthday, most parents feel a loss of control as he or she officially enters adulthood. Parents of children with special needs have even more reason to be concerned because they have the heavy responsibility of determining whether or not their child is ready to graduate high school and transition to the next phase of life. When evaluating this, it is helpful to know that there are special education laws that will assist you in making informed decisions — one that is best for your child. Firstly, all children with disabilities...

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Five steps to getting the Special Education process started

Written by Mariann Crincoli, Esq. Special education is governed by federal and state law which requires public school districts to provide children with disabilities a free and appropriate public education that is individually tailored to meet a child’s unique needs and prepare her for the future as an independent member of society. If you think your child has special education needs, here’s how you should get the process started: Contact your local public school district and provide them with a written request for a referral to the District’s child study team. Sometimes this referral will come from school personnel who are concerned...

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Independent Educational Evaluations

I REQUESTED AN INDEPENDENT EVALUATION AND THE DISTRICT SAID “NO”: NOW WHAT? One of a parent’s most powerful tools is the right to request an independent educational evaluation at public expense. An independent educational evaluation (or “IEE”) is an evaluation performed by someone other than the local agency responsible for the child’s education. Such evaluations supplement child study team evaluations by providing further information about the child's suspected disabilities and potential need for special education and related services. Parents frequently ask when they can request an IEE, how an IEE can help them advocate for their child, and what to do...

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Planning for your Special Need child’s cack to school

Written by Staci J. Greenwald, Esq. For a few glorious weeks each year, classrooms are replaced with trips to the Shore, and your family’s summer vacation makes waiting for the school bus seem a distant memory. Yet, while it may feel like the year has just ended, it’s never too soon to start planning for your child’s successful return to school in September. Of course, the most important resource you and your child’s teachers share is the Individualized Education Program or IEP. Provide a copy of the IEP to each new staff member who will come into contact with your child each...

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