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Connecticut Special Education Law Blog

Does autism qualify your child for special school services?

Regardless of where they fall on the spectrum, children with autism require certain considerations, especially in a school setting. This might include sessions with a speech and language therapist or a behavior therapist as well as other school-provided services.

In Connecticut, children with autism qualify for special education and other services related to their needs per both state and federal laws. However, local schools do not have to provide specific services to autistic students. Instead, they have to provide services that directly relate to their academic performance.

Bullied at school? Here are 3 tips to help your child

When your child requires special education, it's the school's job to make sure he or she is not harassed by other students. A good educational facility makes sure students are kind to one another and understand differences. They should not tolerate abuse or harassment.

Despite that, many children do go through stages where they struggle with bullies. How can you help your child, especially when he or she has special needs?

Letter to Commissioner Wentzell re PDF Accessibility

The recently approved ESSA Connecticut State Plan appears on the federal Education Department's website in a format that is inaccessible to individuals with disabilities. In a letter signed by twenty-seven Connecticut parent advocates and attorneys, Connecticut Education Commissioner Dianna R. Wentzell has been asked to remedy this situation by making the PDF accessible in compliance with Sections 508 and 504 of the federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended.

Preparing your special needs child for college

It's truly inspiring how far we have come to assist special needs children with their educations. The numerous advances have opened up the doors of universities across the United States to a wide variety of students with special needs.

If you're a Connecticut parent with a special needs child, and you're preparing your child for university, the following tips can help.

Does IDEA apply to your child?

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) is a federal law that applies to students between 3 and 22 years old that attend a public educational institution. In order to qualify for IDEA, your child must have a medically identified disability that negatively affects his or her learning.

For example, if you have a son that suffers from autism, emotional disturbance, blindness, deafness or any other covered disability, then he may qualify for special education services under IDEA. Furthermore, every school district in the country has a legal duty to help children with disabilities that affect their education.

What your special needs child deserves in a Connecticut school

Some students need assistance to learn the way others do. Perhaps they are blind or struggle to hear. It's the school's job to make sure these individuals can participate in the classes they're in and have access to the same information and opportunities as other students.

These students are often eligible for individualized education plans, or IEPs. These plans are focused on the specific needs of the student and helps address them for the benefit of the student and his or her educational future.

Special education in Connecticut: What you should know

If your child has special needs, you know that you need to do everything you can to protect him or her and to make sure he or she gets a good education. Special education is provided to children in Connecticut who need that assistance.

Special education laws in Connecticut are designed to protect students who have disabilities. The laws are there to make sure your child gets the help he or she needs to make meaningful progress while working through his or her education program.

Special needs students deserve special effort from schools

When you have a special needs child, you depend on the help of many people outside your family. Educators, doctors and even therapists can help your child overcome disabilities and social issues. Education from a school and the social benefits of being around age peers are critical for the development of special needs children.

That's why the creation of an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) is so important to special needs children in public schools. These plans create concrete goals, based on a child's current abilities, and require regular updates regarding issues and progress.

Katie's Chronicles: Interview with Theresa

The following post is part of a series of reflections and interview responses given by successful young adults with varying disabilities who have direct experience with the Connecticut Special Education system. Our interviewer and writer is Katie Feinstein, daughter of Attorney Feinstein, who is also a successful young adult living with disabilities. Katie chronicles individuals respective journeys within the system and beyond, into their adult lives. The Feinstein Education Law Group represented some of these young adults when they were students. Katie asks individuals to discuss their struggles, triumphs and perspectives as they consider their pasts and move forward into futures of hope and evolving independence.

Don't let the education system leave your child behind

If you have a child with special needs, it can be tough to determine what school is most appropriate for his or her talents, gifts and learning limitations. The ultimate goal of any parent is to ensure that his or her child gets the best education possible, and doesn't get left behind. You should challenge the child, yes, but not so deeply that educational progress is impossible.

That said, if you're like most parents of special needs kids, you're looking at a lot of options and you're probably feeling a little overwhelmed. What's the most appropriate education opportunity for your child?

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