Special Education

Special Education

Disputes between Parents and Districts concerning the provision of Special Education services are among the most complicated, contentious, expensive, and confounding of all conflicts in public schools today. Parent, teachers, administrators, students and their advocates and attorneys often struggle to:
  • understand and respond to complex and compelling student needs
  • allocate limited resources
  • interpret and abide by confusing and conflicting laws and regulations
  • establish and maintain trust and cooperation
  • navigate the perilous waters of power, responsibility, authority, rights and needs
  • de-escalate contentious legal disputes
We help School Districts, Parents and their Attorneys and Advocates navigate conflicts, solve problems, rebuild relationships, and restore trust.

We mediate and facilitate the resolution of:

  • Due Process Hearings under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act (504), and state Education Codes
  • Litigation and Appeals of claims in federal court under IDEA, 504, ADA and other federal statutes
  • Disputes concerning the implementation of settlement agreements, consent decrees, court orders
  • Disputes concerning the discipline/suspension/expulsion and student placement
  • Disputes concerning the use of restraints and seclusion
  • Settlement agreements between Parents and Local Education Agencies (LEAs)
  • IEP/IFSP meetings
  • Interagency meetings
  • IEP/IFSP/504 Plan development

It Takes One to Know One

My mediation and dispute resolution practice focuses exclusively on conflicts arising in public and private K-12 schools, colleges, and universities. My expertise in Special Education conflict resolution comes from my professional and personal experience and expertise as:

A Public Elementary School Classroom Teacher and Union Representative

An Attorney for Students with Special Needs

An Adjunct Professor of Law (Special Education Law)

Learn More About:

Many people today agree that we need to reduce violence in our society. If we are truly serious about this, we must deal with the roots of violence, particularly those that exist within each of us. We need to embrace ‘inner disarmament,’ reducing our own emotions of suspicion, hatred and hostility toward our brothers and sisters.”

Dalai Lama XIV

The most tragic cause of social disharmony is when the speed with which people find mistakes of others outweighs their simple belief that they too are infallible!

Israelmore Ayivor

Each conflict is self conflict.

Raphael Zernoff

The worst battle you’ll have to fight is between what you know and how you feel.

Turcois Ominek

During the flames of controversy, opinions, mass disputes, conflict, and world news, sometimes the most precious, refreshing, peaceful words to hear amidst all the chaos are simply and humbly ‘I don’t know.

Criss Jami

Asking why you should retaliate often solves the problem better than retaliation itself.

Innocent Mwatsikesimbe

We usually learn from debates that we seldom learn from debates.

Mokokoma Mokhonoana

The world is an arena where things represent things. It is a stage where the same thing is seen from different lenses as a different thing.

Ernest Agyemang Yeboah

Before reacting to any conflicting situation in life. Ask yourself a simple question: ‘You want to be happy or you want to be right?

Aditya Ajmera

Conflict occurs everywhere except in the cemetery. Everyone experiences conflict except the dead. Thankful for being alive…

Assegid Habtewold

History is littered with the wars everybody knew could never happen.

Enoch Powell

We seldom learn much from someone with whom we agree.

Mokokoma Mokhonoana

We fight because we fail to understand why really we fight.

Ernest Agyemang Yeboah

Conflict is not necessarily bad. If you can avoid taking conflict personally, it is actually a way to get better decisions and better results.

Sonali Sinha

You can teach people everything except how to get along.

Marty Rubin

Real conflicts between two people, those which do not serve to cover up or to project, but which are experienced on the deep level of inner reality to which they belong, are not destructive. They lead to clarification, they produce a catharsis from which both persons emerge with more knowledge and more strength.

Erich Fromm

Half of the conflicts in your head get resolved when you seek to understand instead of seeking to be understood.

Nitya Prakash

They began to fight, ’cause they didn’t know each other’s stories.

Jaco Strydom

You can observe a lot by just watching.

Yogi Berra

The source of all the conflicts in the world is in trying to convince everyone that you’re always correct.

Mwanandeke Kindembo

People may not remember what you said, but they will remember how you made them feel.

Maya Angelou

Discord is harder to end then to begin.

Edmund Spenser

Ten per cent of conflict is due to difference of opinion. Ninety per cent is due to wrong tone of voice.

Ritu Ghatourey

It is a fact that the bitterest contradictions and the deadliest conflicts of the world are carried on in every individual breast capable of feeling and passion.

Joseph Conrad

In some ways, we will always be different. In other ways, we will always be the same. There is always room to disagree and blame, just as there is always room to take a new perspective and empathize. Understanding is a choice

Vironika Tugaleva

Perhaps one day, all these conflicts will end, and it won’t be because of great statesmen or churches or organizations like this one. It’ll be because people have changed.

Kazuo Ishiguro

What would you have? Your gentleness shall force More than your force move us to gentleness.

William Shakespeare

Do not think of knocking out another person’s brains because he differs in opinion from you. It would be as rational to knock yourself on the head because you differ from yourself ten years ago.

Horace Mann