Bullying

MA19E-1001283

MERCER COUNTY - SPECIAL EDUCATION/BULLYING

Representation in settlement conference to obtain IEEs and possible OOD placement

KA is a 14-year-old 8th-grader who has been diagnosed with ADHD, autism, a learning disability, and PTSD. KA has not been progressing academically, but the district has repeatedly failed to consider recommendations from evaluations or to provide him with sufficient reading support. In March 2019, KA began exhibiting school refusal and anxiety. He later revealed that he had been sexually assaulted several times on school grounds by another student. KA began exhibiting aggressive and sexually inappropriate behaviors. His therapist and psychiatrist both advised KA’s mother, MA, not to send him back to school. The district agreed to place KA on home instruction, but only until the end of the school year. In May, the district filed a due process petition, seeking consent to reevaluate KA. MA consented and several evaluations were done over the summer, but MA has not yet seen the reports. In June, MA filed her own request for a due process hearing, requesting a therapeutic out-of-district placement for KA. The district has refused to provide home instruction beginning this school year. MA is seeking representation at a settlement conference (not yet scheduled) to obtain independent evaluations, an appropriate out-of-district placement for her son, or if not, a transition plan to gradually ease KA back into school and assurances that he will be kept safe.

To review, email jmoore@vljnj.org

SP19E-1000745

BURLINGTON COUNTY - BULLYING

Negotiation with school district to obtain a change in placement, additional services in 504

TP is a 13-year-old 7th-grader who has a 504 plan. In December 2018, she was assaulted by another student in school and sustained a concussion. Following the incident, she was also cyberbullied. TP is now afraid to return to school because the student who assaulted her is still there, and has consequently been on home instruction since the incident occurred. The district refuses to consider an alternative placement for her and wants her to return to school before the end of the school year. TP’s pediatrician is not recommending that she return. TP’s mother, SP, is seeking help in advocating for a change in placement and any other services TP may require to ensure a safe return to school.

To review, email jmoore@vljnj.org

DH19E-1000892

BERGEN COUNTY - SPECIAL EDUCATION/BULLYING

Negotiation with district to address HIB, obtain transportation and ESY, and amend IEP

JJ is a 12-year-old 6th-grader who has been diagnosed with ADHD. Since October 2018, he has been bullied because of his race and his disability by one particular student in the class. JJ’s mother, DH, has reported three incidents to the principal, but nothing has been done. In addition, the district has refused to provide transportation to JJ, despite the fact that DH provided a doctor’s note indicating that JJ’s asthma is exacerbated by having to walk to school in temperatures below 40 and above 80 degrees. The district also refused to provide JJ with ESY, instead recommending that DH send him to an expensive recreation camp. DH is seeking representation to address the bullying issues, obtain transportation and ESY for her son, and amend his IEP as appropriate.

To review, email jmoore@vljnj.org

UNDER REVIEW

TH19E-1000317

ESSEX COUNTY - BULLYING

Representation to ensure compliance with Harassment, Intimidation & Bullying (HIB) regulations.

NP is in 4th grade and was video-recorded by another student while using the toilet. That student showed the video recording to several other students during that school day and showed it to NP's sister during an after-school program. NP's mother reported the incident to the assistant principal the following day. While the assistant principal told NP's mother that the student who video-recorded NP had been suspended, the mother has never received any notices that the incident was considered Harassment, Intimidation & Bullying (HIB). The mother is concerned because the district does not seem to have done anything to ensure that the recording was secured. The principal told NP's mother that the district does not secure the recording because that would be promoting child pornography. Instead, the principal said that it was the responsibility of the parents of the student who made the recording to deal with the recording. The parent is seeking representation to ensure that the video-recording of NP has been destroyed and that incidents like this one do not occur again.

To review, email jmoore@vljnj.org