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Wednesday, June 12, 2024

SCOTUS Denies Cert in IEP Case

These meetings can turn nasty, and many autism parents have “IEP horror stories.”  One parent told me that she tried to ease tensions by bringing cookies to the meeting.  The principal then shouted to his staff, “Nobody touch those cookies!”  Another parent writes of asking for a sensory diet, a personalized activity plan that helps the student stay focused (e.g., low noise levels for those with a sensitivity to sound).  “After just proclaiming she is extremely knowledgeable about Asperger’s Syndrome, from the mouth of a school psychologist after we suggested our son needed a sensory diet. `Our cafeteria does not have the ability to provide this.’”

 Lauren Sforza at The Hill:

The Supreme Court on Monday rejected an appeal from a father about whether he had the right to video record meetings with school officials about his son’s special education program.

The nation’s highest court turned down the appeal from Scott Pitta, a father of a son with special needs, who wanted to video record a meeting between himself and officials in the school district of Bridgewater, Mass., about his son’s Individual Education Program (IEP).

An IEP is a document that details what services a student with disabilities needs to receive to meet their educational goals. The petition notes that schools are required to consult with parents about a student’s IEP under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

Pitta informed school officials he would be video recording meetings with them about his son’s IEP after he realized that the minutes taken on previous meetings were “incomplete,” according to the petition.

The issue arose after school officials said that his son no longer required an IEP, which Pitta disagreed with, according to the petition. In a Sept. 20, 2022, meeting with officials, Pitta requested that the session be recorded “because he did not trust that the Respondents’ own minutes would accurately reflect the relevant statements.”