In New York children with disabilities are to be afforded reasonable accommodations in the classroom to help them learn and also have equal access to school programs, events and activities. What happens when the school does not provide that reasonable accommodation and when does a request for a specific accommodation become unreasonable?
If a parent requests services for their child and the school fails to provide testing to assess the child’s disability or the accommodation suggested by the testing, the parent can file a due process complaint against the New York State Department of Education.
Some examples of reasonable accommodations for students with disabilities may include speech-to-text software; extended time for testing or a Chromebook for note taking. Accommodations for a student are based on the student’s needs but do not fundamentally change the school program, activity or event. The student must exhaust administrative remedies to obtain the accommodation unless the lawsuit is for something other than “free appropriate education.” For example, whether the student can bring a service dog to school.
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