March 2019 Legal Update

This month’s update concerns issues that were subject to recent officially-published court decisions and are of practical significance: (a) FAPE variations,
including ABA methodology and transition services, and (b) child find and eligibility complications, including the IDEA statute of limitations, in the case of a
gifted child with school attendance and mental health problems.

Click here to download the update and read more.

May 2018 Legal Update

This month’s legal alert summarizes two recent articles, one that is an updated outcomes analysis of the aftermath of Endrew F. upon its first anniversary (“The Aftermath of Endrew F. One Year Later: An Updated Outcomes Analysis”) and the other that is a case law analysis of the obligations to students with disabilities in private schools (“Legal Obligations to Students with Disabilities in Private Schools”).

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September 2017 Legal Update

September’s legal alert summarizes two recent officially published federal court decisions, M.L. v. Smith (2017) and F.L v. Board of Education of Great Neck U.F.S.D. (2017). These decisions respectively illustrate (a) a novel issue under the IDEA, and (b) a set of continuing issues, including procedural FAPE (e.g., parental participation), substantive FAPE (e.g., Endrew F.), and eligibility for extended school year (ESY).

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June 2017 Legal Update

This latest monthly legal alert summarizes a recent published, federal appellate court decision that is significant for its multiple issue rulings. In M.C. v. Antelope Valley Unified School District (2017), the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals made several rulings that were completely or partially against the defendant district that appear to have notable implications for special education practice and litigation. Although not at all limited to these particular facts, the child in this case was a high school student who had a genetic disorder that rendered him blind and with a host of developmental delays in all academic areas. This decision is binding only in the nine states in the Far West that encompass the Ninth Circuit. However, it is not unusual for published federal appellate decisions to have a radiating, persuasive effect on other jurisdictions. Some of these rulings are much more likely than others to “stick” in jurisdictions beyond the Ninth Circuit.

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May 2017 Legal Update

This latest monthly legal alert examines the immediate effects of the Supreme Court’s Endrew F. decision on current cases specific to the substantive appropriateness of IEPs. A more detailed analysis is forthcoming in the following article, which will be posted on after publication later this month:

Perry A. Zirkel, “The Supreme Court’s Decision in Endrew F. v. Douglas County School District RE-1: A Meaningful Raising of the Bar,” West’s Education Law Reporter (May 2017).

Click to download the May 2017 update.

March 2017 Legal Update #2: Special Issue for Endrew F.

This month has a special second alert for the Supreme Court’s March 22, 2017 decision in Endrew F. v. Douglas County School District RE-1, which  revisited and refined the Rowley (1982) interpretation of the substantive standard for IEPs.  Click to read my immediate “take” on this centrally significant decision, which directly addresses one side of FAPE and indirectly serves as a reminder of the modern interpretation of the procedural side of this “centerpiece” of the IDEA.