From Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund (DREDF)
Disagreements are a fact of life, but for children with disabilities, time and appropriate help are so important that Congress included a set of "Procedural Safeguards" (formal steps to take when you have concerns about what the school district is offering or refusing to do) in IDEA to make sure that a child's right to a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) is protected. Filing for due Process is a key part of those safeguards.This month's Special EDition discusses due process hearings under IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act).
What is Due Process?
Whenever possible, it is best to try to work out disagreements related to special education directly with the school district and IEP team. However, when this does not work, you are NOT powerless. The next step to consider is filing for "Due process" (this includes whether or not your child is eligible for services at all). Due Process is a legal term that describes a government's commitment to a system of fair procedures to uphold a citizen's legal rights. In the context of IDEA and special education, due process ensures that your child with a disability (or suspected disability) receives an appropriate education based on his/her individual needs by outlining a process of steps to take when disputes arise ending in a formal hearing where a judge makes the final determination. A due process hearing is a way for you to resolve disagreements with your school district when you can't find a solution through the IEP process.
Read more HERE.