What Parents Need to Know
Both Federal and state laws mandate special education in the United States. Nonetheless, parents of children with exceptional needs often face an uphill battle when it comes to obtaining the education their children need and deserve.
Special education advocacy can be found through agencies designed to speak or write for the children and their parents. Advocates cannot provide legal counsel, however, the can help parents to find an attorney if one is needed.
Many states have special education advocacy organizations. For example, in Massachusetts, there is SPaN, Inc. (Special Needs Advocacy, Network), which offers parents information and resources. In addition, most states' education departments have resources and information that parents can access.
Knowing there is someone who understands the legal aspects of special education helps parents to focus on finding the best educational experience for their child in a school that is open and accepting to children who are differently abled.