Frequently Asked Questions About Education Law Topics
The term “education law” encompasses a great many areas of the law that affect all parties in the educational system: students, parents, teachers, school administrators and other connected individuals and organizations. Local, state and federal laws, as well as school rules, may apply when a controversy arises. Our practice focuses on helping parents of children and teenagers, as well as adult students, resolve their education problems.
At Griffin Newell, LLC, in Denver, we represent clients in a range of education law matters, including special education issues. Although we are based in Denver, we are able to help families throughout Colorado. We take a personalized, hands-on approach to help each client understand their rights and options and get their kids the proper educational services they need.
Please peruse the answers to some frequently asked questions below. If you are a parent or student facing a challenge with the educational system in Colorado, we are here to help you.
What is an individualized education program (IEP)?
Your child with special needs may require – and be entitled to – an IEP. In general, an IEP is a document that explains how the school will provide a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) to a student. The IEP must comply with the requirements of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and, in Colorado, the Exceptional Children’s Education Act (ECEA). Consult with an attorney who is experienced in this area to ensure that your child is receiving all of the benefits that they are entitled to.
Is an IEP the same thing as Section 504 Plan?
No, an IEP is not the same type of document as a Section 504 Plan – although there are some similarities. Parents are often confused about the similarities and differences between IEPs and Section 504 Plans, as well as the various state and federal laws that protect the rights of individuals with disabilities. Talk to a knowledgeable attorney who can explain these matters and apply them to your situation.
How can parents ensure that a special needs child gets the services he or she is entitled to from public schools?
Knowing your rights and your student’s rights is essential. In general, parents have the right to inspect their child’s school records. Communicating clearly with the school is also important. Parents of students with disabilities may have various procedural options to resolve disputes. If you think your child isn’t getting the services they need, you owe it to yourself and your child to discuss your options with a caring, knowledgeable education law attorney.
Do students have rights in school disciplinary matters?
School discipline can have a significant impact on a child’s future. There are many laws that may be applicable to a particular school discipline matter. In general, students are entitled to a hearing before they are expelled from a public school district in Colorado. Other important legal protections may apply if the student has a disability. Legal representation in disciplinary matters can be very valuable for protecting a student’s rights.
What specific actions can we take if we believe our child has been disciplined inappropriately by the school?
Let’s talk about it! The answer to this question will depend on many factors, including previous disciplinary history, witness accounts of the discipline in question, and behaviors that triggered the discipline. Doing nothing is not your style when you believe your child has been wronged. Let’s explore your options together.
How can I protect my child when there are allegations of bullying – perhaps cyberbullying?
Awareness of laws pertaining to bullying is a huge step forward in finding relief or a fair outcome, whether your child has been targeted or accused of bullying. Learn how the law can protect your child and the steps you can take immediately. Bring your concerns to an attorney experienced in these vital areas.
What is Title IX and what does it have to do with my education problem?
The federal law known as Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972 prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in educational settings when the school (including colleges and universities) receives federal financial assistance. If you or your child was discriminated against on the basis of sex or gender, let us help you explore options for making things right.
What If My Question Is Not Listed Here?
Griffin Newell, LLC, is a powerful source of help for clients with questions and controversies related to education. We genuinely look forward to hearing from you. Call 720-727-9363 or email us to schedule a consultation with a lawyer.