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Who We Are »
Betsy Combier

Help Us to Continue to Help Others »
Email: betsy.combier@gmail.com

 
The E-Accountability Foundation announces the

'A for Accountability' Award

to those who are willing to whistleblow unjust, misleading, or false actions and claims of the politico-educational complex in order to bring about educational reform in favor of children of all races, intellectual ability and economic status. They ask questions that need to be asked, such as "where is the money?" and "Why does it have to be this way?" and they never give up. These people have withstood adversity and have held those who seem not to believe in honesty, integrity and compassion accountable for their actions. The winners of our "A" work to expose wrong-doing not for themselves, but for others - total strangers - for the "Greater Good"of the community and, by their actions, exemplify courage and self-less passion. They are parent advocates. We salute you.

Winners of the "A":

Johnnie Mae Allen
David Possner
Dee Alpert
Joan Klingsberg
Harris Lirtzman
Hipolito Colon
Jim Calantjis
Larry Fisher
The Giraffe Project and Giraffe Heroes' Program
Jimmy Kilpatrick and George Scott
Zach Kopplin
Matthew LaClair
Wangari Maathai
Erich Martel
Steve Orel, in memoriam, Interversity, and The World of Opportunity
Marla Ruzicka, in Memoriam
Nancy Swan
Bob Witanek
Peyton Wolcott
[ More Details » ]
 
Education Secretary Betsy DeVos Rescinds 72 Guidance Documents Outlining Rights For Disabled Students
The Education Department has rescinded 72 policy documents that outline the rights of students with disabilities as part of the Trump administration’s effort to eliminate regulations it deems superfluous....Lindsay E. Jones, the chief policy and advocacy officer for the National Center for Learning Disabilities, said she was particularly concerned to see guidance documents outlining how schools could use federal money for special education removed.
          
   President Donald Trump and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos   
DeVos rescinds 72 guidance documents outlining rights for disabled students
By Moriah Balingit October 21, 2017
LINK

The Education Department has rescinded 72 policy documents that outline the rights of students with disabilities as part of the Trump administration’s effort to eliminate regulations it deems superfluous.

The Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services wrote in a newsletter Friday that it had “a total of 72 guidance documents that have been rescinded due to being outdated, unnecessary, or ineffective — 63 from the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) and 9 from the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA).” The documents, which fleshed out students’ rights under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and the Rehabilitation Act, were rescinded Oct. 2.

A spokeswoman for Education Secretary Betsy DeVos did not respond to requests for comment.

Advocates for students with disabilities were still reviewing the changes to determine their impact. Lindsay E. Jones, the chief policy and advocacy officer for the National Center for Learning Disabilities, said she was particularly concerned to see guidance documents outlining how schools could use federal money for special education removed.

“All of these are meant to be very useful … in helping schools and parents understand and fill in with concrete examples the way the law is meant to work when it’s being implemented in various situations,” said Jones.

President Trump in February signed an executive order “to alleviate unnecessary regulatory burdens,” spurring Education Department officials to begin a top-to-bottom review of its regulations. The department sought comments on possible changes to the special education guidance and held a hearing, during which many disability rights groups and other education advocates pressed officials to keep all of the guidance documents in place, Jones said.

This is not the first time DeVos has rolled back Education Department guidance, moves that have raised the ire of civil rights groups. The secretary in February signed off on Trump’s rescinding of guidance that directed schools to allow transgender students to use bathrooms in accordance with their gender identity, saying that those matters should be left up to state and local school officials. In September, she scrapped rules that outlined how schools should investigate allegations of sexual assault, arguing that the Obama-era guidance did not sufficiently take into account the rights of the accused.

“Much of the guidance around [the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act] focused on critical clarifications of the regulations required to meet the needs of students with disabilities and provide them a free, appropriate public education in the least restrictive environment,” Scott said in a statement. “Notwithstanding the actions taken by the Department today, the regulations still remained enforced; however they lack the clarification the guidance provided.”

(Trump administration rolls back protections for transgender students)

The special education guidance documents rescinded this month clarified the rights of disabled students in a number of areas, including making clear how schools could spend federal money set aside for special education. Some, such as one titled “Questions and Answers on Serving Children with Disabilities Placed by Their Parents at Private Schools,” translated the legal jargon into plain English for parents advocating for their children. Some of the guidance documents that were cut had been on the books since 1980s.

Jones said it is not unusual for new administrations to update documents or to eliminate redundancies, but she had never seen so many eliminated at one time.

“If the documents that are on this list are all covered in newer documents that were released — which sometimes does happen — that would be fine,” said Jones.” Our goal is to make sure that parents and schools and educators understand how these laws work, and the department plays a critical role in that.”

Moriah Balingit writes about education for the Post. Follow @ByMoriah

 
© 2003 The E-Accountability Foundation