Texas Special Education Attorney
Under Texas and federal laws, many children with special needs who attend public schools are entitled to accommodations and services that greatly enhance the quality of their education. For parents, helping these children thrive and succeed is both a passion and a major challenge. Exercising and protecting your child’s rights under special education laws may require a lawyer with extensive knowledge of the applicable statutes, systems and processes.
Legal Counsel For Parents Of Children With Special Needs
Only a select few Texas attorneys make special education law an area of focus. Through our own association with Melissa G. Scherer at Scherer Law, PLLC, this is an emerging strength for us at The Law Office of J. Kevin Clark P.C.
Ms. Scherer is dedicated to providing parents with high quality, personalized services. She serves each of her clients with compassion, sensitivity and skill. She is a strong problem-solver and can counsel and empower her clients to be proactive in their child’s education. Having worked previously as a diagnostician in Texas and as a special education school attorney, Ms. Scherer uses her knowledge of special education law and understanding of the Texas educational system to effectively advocate for children.
Ms. Scherer keeps her clients’ needs at the forefront of all that she does, but she also understands the value in preserving the district/parent relationship. She strives to obtain her clients’ objectives while maintaining the most collaborative relationship possible with school district personnel.
If your child is receiving – or should receive – special education services, you can turn to Ms. Scherer for responsive and effective advocacy. She can provide informed specialized advice in all areas of special education law including:
- Records review and strategic planning: Review of a child’s special education and other school records can be a critical first step to determine the child’s specific needs. This is key to forming a strategic plan for successful educational programming. From this review, we can provide parents with guidance for participation in meetings with school personnel including participation in Admission Review Dismissal (ARD) committee meetings. We can locate educational experts for evaluations or consultations when necessary.
- Negotiating and communicating with district personnel: Many disputes can be resolved though means other than litigation, including the process of mediation, while maintaining collaborative relationships with district personnel. Having worked within the school system, Ms. Scherer knows how schools function and how to navigate systems successfully to better achieve a positive resolution quickly and effectively — saving the money and time required for protracted litigation while achieving maximum benefit.
- Filing TEA or OCR complaints: When a school district takes (or fails to take) an action, or violates a procedural due process right of a child with disabilities, it is possible to file a complaint with the Texas Education Agency (TEA) or the US Dept. of Education Office of Civil Rights (OCR).
- Representation in ARD committee meetings: We use our knowledge of special education law, and more importantly, our acquired and invaluable knowledge of the Texas public school system to strongly advocate for the child’s specific needs. Ms. Scherer’s years of experience participating in thousands of ARD committee meetings enables her to be a strong and effective voice for your child.
- Manifestation Determination Review or other school hearings: Sometimes it is necessary to provide guidance or representation to protect a student with disabilities who has been disciplined harshly by a school district. We also work diligently to keep parents ahead of this issue by providing proactive support and guidance. including advocating for appropriate evaluations and behavioral services at school for the child.
- Due Process Hearings: Children with disabilities have the right to challenge inadequate educational programming through an administrative Due Process Hearing, and if necessary, through the federal court trial and appellate system. Many cases and issues can be solved through diligent, creative, and steadfast advocacy without the necessity of litigation, but we remain willing to pursue all appropriate remedies through due process and the court system.
Make Sure Your Voice Is Heard
Navigating the complicated world of special education services can be challenging and frustrating. Whether you are asking, “Is a Section 504 Plan right for my child?” or “What do I do about a school district that is avoiding its obligations?”, we want to help. We are prepared and able to provide skilled advocacy for your child, all the while striving to maintain a positive parent/district relationship. But, make no mistake, when efforts to reach consensus on an IEP fail, the school district has likely already consulted with its attorney to protect its interests.