NEW RULING: A SCHOOL MUST OFFER AN IEP REASONABLY CALCULATED TO ENABLE A CHILD TO MAKE PROGRESS APPROPRIATE IN LIGHT OF THE CHILD’S CIRCUMSTANCES

Earlier this week, the Supreme Court issued a ruling in Endrew F. v. Douglas County School District. The Supreme Court unanimously issued a ruling on the level of benefit IDEA requires public schools to provide to students with disabilities. In the past, the level of benefit school districts were required to provide was de minimis, or negligible. In this week’s ruling the court ruled that schools must offer an IEP that is reasonably calculated to enable a child to make progress appropriate in light of the child’s circumstances.

School districts have often argued that the level of benefit only needs to provide some benefit, as opposed to no benefit. This standard has long been a source of frustration for parents.  The Supreme Court in Endrew recognized the adequacy of a given IEP turns on the unique circumstances of the child for whom it was created.

The Supreme Court recognizes the need to defer to the judgment of school officials, informed by their own expertise and in light of the views of a child’s parents or guardians. The Supreme Court recognized the decisions made by an IEP team are of critical importance to the life of a child with a disability.

 

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