SOMERSET COUNTY - SPECIAL EDUCATION
Parent is Spanish-speaking. Client is seeking representation at mediation.
J.S.R. is a 7-year-old boy who is profoundly impacted by autism. J.S.R. has significant feeding problems that are affecting his health, and he is not toilet-trained. J.S.R. recently began eating dirt and inserting a toy into his anus then placing it in his mouth. His mother asked at an IEP meeting in April 2018 that he be placed at a different out of district school. The participants at that meeting agreed and proposed to send J.S.R.'s records to four other schools. His usual case manager was not present at that meeting, but the substitute sent by the district agreed with the other IEP team members about looking for another out of district placement. At the request of the school district, J.S.R.'s mother went to meet with his usual case manager in April 2018 expecting to sign authorizations to send J.S.R.'s records to the four schools discussed at the IEP meeting. Although the case manager knew that the mother only spoke very limited English, the school district did not obtain an interpreter. The little the parent understood was that because J.S.R. receives “some services” at home through the Children's System of Care (PerformCare, Care Management Organization "CMO") that the district is not obligated to offer home programming. It is not clear what services CMO provides and if the CMO has, or is currently, providing ABA therapeutic services in the home. After this meeting, the parent received a copy of an IEP from the district proposing to keep J.S.R. at the Center for Lifelong Learning. It does not appear that the district offered to translate that IEP in any way. The parent filed a petition for mediation-only. In addition to making a request for her son to be transferred to a different school that provides a more intensive ABA program, she requested that the school district provide a home component of ABA services. The parent is seeking representation at the mediation.
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