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Conflict Resolution In Special Education: EMPOWERING PARENTS AND EDUCATORS TO WORK TOGETHER TO GUARANTEE EQUAL OPPORTUNITY AND ACHIEVE EDUCATIONAL GOALS.

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Presentation on theme: "Conflict Resolution In Special Education: EMPOWERING PARENTS AND EDUCATORS TO WORK TOGETHER TO GUARANTEE EQUAL OPPORTUNITY AND ACHIEVE EDUCATIONAL GOALS."— Presentation transcript:

1 Conflict Resolution In Special Education: EMPOWERING PARENTS AND EDUCATORS TO WORK TOGETHER TO GUARANTEE EQUAL OPPORTUNITY AND ACHIEVE EDUCATIONAL GOALS FOR MINORITY STUDENTS Tonya Sampson-Canepa, J.D. Synergy Resolutions, Inc. Houston, Texas October 28, 2005 – Eugene, OR

2 Copywritten By Synergy Resolutions, Inc All rights reserved. No materials may be reproduced, duplicated, and/or distributed in any form or format without the prior written authorization of the author.2 Conflict Resolution In Special Education: Conflict Resolution In Special Education: Empower Educators Empower Educators Empower Parents Empower Parents Work Together Work Together Guarantee Equal Opportunity Guarantee Equal Opportunity Achieve Educational Goals Achieve Educational Goals Minority Students Minority Students

3 Copywritten By Synergy Resolutions, Inc All rights reserved. No materials may be reproduced, duplicated, and/or distributed in any form or format without the prior written authorization of the author.3 Let’s Talk … What concerns do I have about educational opportunities for minority students in general? What concerns do I have about educational opportunities for minority students in general? What do I know about minority students in Special Education? What do I know about minority students in Special Education? What additional concerns might I have about educational opportunities for minority students with disabilities? What additional concerns might I have about educational opportunities for minority students with disabilities? How does my state or local school system address these concerns? How does my state or local school system address these concerns? How does my state mediation program reach minority students in Special Education? How does my state mediation program reach minority students in Special Education?

4 Copywritten By Synergy Resolutions, Inc All rights reserved. No materials may be reproduced, duplicated, and/or distributed in any form or format without the prior written authorization of the author.4 Significant Steps … Before 1975 – Majority of Disabled Students Were Not Receiving Public Education Before 1975 – Majority of Disabled Students Were Not Receiving Public Education 1975 – IDEA (Individuals With Disabilities Education Act) - Substantive Rights and Procedural Protections – FAPE (Free & Appropriate Public Education) 1975 – IDEA (Individuals With Disabilities Education Act) - Substantive Rights and Procedural Protections – FAPE (Free & Appropriate Public Education)

5 Copywritten By Synergy Resolutions, Inc All rights reserved. No materials may be reproduced, duplicated, and/or distributed in any form or format without the prior written authorization of the author.5 Significant Steps … (cont.) IDEA 1997 – Required Mediation Program When Due Process Hearing Requested IDEA 1997 – Required Mediation Program When Due Process Hearing Requested IDEA 2004 – Requires Mediation Program Even When Due Process Hearing NOT Requested IDEA 2004 – Requires Mediation Program Even When Due Process Hearing NOT Requested IDEA 2004 – Requires “Resolution Session” within 15 days of Request For Due Process Hearing, after which Due Process Timeline Begins IDEA 2004 – Requires “Resolution Session” within 15 days of Request For Due Process Hearing, after which Due Process Timeline Begins

6 Copywritten By Synergy Resolutions, Inc All rights reserved. No materials may be reproduced, duplicated, and/or distributed in any form or format without the prior written authorization of the author.6 Setting The Stage … “In the highly emotional world of special education, which involves children’s classification as “different” and their placement in programs outside of the regular classroom, it is not uncommon for parents to believe that the system poorly serves their children or for educators to believe that their expertise, compassion, and years of training are continuously and unfairly under attack” “In the highly emotional world of special education, which involves children’s classification as “different” and their placement in programs outside of the regular classroom, it is not uncommon for parents to believe that the system poorly serves their children or for educators to believe that their expertise, compassion, and years of training are continuously and unfairly under attack” 1 “Is Mediation a Fair Way to Resolve Special Education Disputes? First Empirical Findings” Peter J. Kuriloff and Steven S. Goldberg, Harvard Negotiation Law Review, Vol. 2-35, Pg “Is Mediation a Fair Way to Resolve Special Education Disputes? First Empirical Findings” Peter J. Kuriloff and Steven S. Goldberg, Harvard Negotiation Law Review, Vol. 2-35, Pg. 60

7 Copywritten By Synergy Resolutions, Inc All rights reserved. No materials may be reproduced, duplicated, and/or distributed in any form or format without the prior written authorization of the author.7 Disproportionality – Issues ? Inadequate Services Inadequate Services Low-quality Curriculum & Instruction Low-quality Curriculum & Instruction Unnecessary Isolation From Non-Disabled Peers – LRE / Inclusion Unnecessary Isolation From Non-Disabled Peers – LRE / Inclusion Overrepresentation Overrepresentation Over-diagnosis / Mis-diagnosis Over-diagnosis / Mis-diagnosis Behavior Issues / Manifestation Behavior Issues / Manifestation Other Hardships Other Hardships

8 Copywritten By Synergy Resolutions, Inc All rights reserved. No materials may be reproduced, duplicated, and/or distributed in any form or format without the prior written authorization of the author.8 DPH, Resolution Session, Mediation, IEP Facilitation … Most Common Issues Are Non-Legal (i.e., Non- DPH) Most Common Issues Are Non-Legal (i.e., Non- DPH) Effective / Successful Effective / Successful Some States Promote Mediation Without DPH Request Some States Promote Mediation Without DPH Request Relatively High Satisfaction Rate With Outcome Relatively High Satisfaction Rate With Outcome Alternative To Costly DPH Alternative To Costly DPH Linked To Due Process Hearing Requests Linked To Due Process Hearing Requests Minorities Not Accessing DPH, Mediation, etc. Minorities Not Accessing DPH, Mediation, etc. Minorities May Not Be Effectively Participating Minorities May Not Be Effectively Participating Inherent Power Imbalances May Not Be Adequately Addressed Inherent Power Imbalances May Not Be Adequately Addressed Little Focus on Improvement In Relationship Little Focus on Improvement In Relationship

9 Copywritten By Synergy Resolutions, Inc All rights reserved. No materials may be reproduced, duplicated, and/or distributed in any form or format without the prior written authorization of the author.9 You’ve Won ……. A New Car !!! But …. But …. You Don’t Have Money For Gas You Don’t Have Money For Gas You Don’t Have a Valid Driver’s License You Don’t Have a Valid Driver’s License You Don’t Know How To Drive You Don’t Know How To Drive YOU DON’T KNOW YOU WON A CAR !!! YOU DON’T KNOW YOU WON A CAR !!!

10 Copywritten By Synergy Resolutions, Inc All rights reserved. No materials may be reproduced, duplicated, and/or distributed in any form or format without the prior written authorization of the author.10 Barriers To Full Participation Inability To Engage Productively In Conflict – (Models/Systems Used???) Inability To Engage Productively In Conflict – (Models/Systems Used???) Lack of Effective Representation and Advocacy Lack of Effective Representation and Advocacy Lack of Access to & Awareness of Means of Resolving Disputes Lack of Access to & Awareness of Means of Resolving Disputes

11 Copywritten By Synergy Resolutions, Inc All rights reserved. No materials may be reproduced, duplicated, and/or distributed in any form or format without the prior written authorization of the author.11 Eliminating Barriers Conflict Resolution Training Conflict Resolution Training Parents Parents Special Education Staff and Other Personnel Special Education Staff and Other Personnel Advocates and Representatives Advocates and Representatives Increase Options For Self-Advocacy Increase Options For Self-Advocacy Law School Clinical Programs Law School Clinical Programs Community Service Programs Community Service Programs

12 Copywritten By Synergy Resolutions, Inc All rights reserved. No materials may be reproduced, duplicated, and/or distributed in any form or format without the prior written authorization of the author.12 Eliminating Barriers (cont.) Early Intervention & Empowerment of Parents Conflict Resolution Training Initial Annual Follow-up Advocacy Training Early Intervention & Empowerment of Schools Incorporation Into Degree Curricula Initial Upon Employment of All Personnel Routine For Personnel Involved Directly in Special Education

13 Copywritten By Synergy Resolutions, Inc All rights reserved. No materials may be reproduced, duplicated, and/or distributed in any form or format without the prior written authorization of the author.13 Eliminating Barriers (cont.) Early Intervention – Parents & Schools Early Intervention – Parents & Schools IEP Facilitation IEP Facilitation Resolution Session Resolution Session Ombuds Office Ombuds Office Training Training Dissemination of Information on Available Services Dissemination of Information on Available Services

14 Copywritten By Synergy Resolutions, Inc All rights reserved. No materials may be reproduced, duplicated, and/or distributed in any form or format without the prior written authorization of the author.14 Conflict Resolution Continuum Consortium For Appropriate Dispute Resolution in Education (CADRE) Consortium For Appropriate Dispute Resolution in Education (CADRE) Identification of Services in States Identification of Services in States Efforts To “Move Upstream” On the Continuum of Services Efforts To “Move Upstream” On the Continuum of Services

15 CADRE

16 Copywritten By Synergy Resolutions, Inc All rights reserved. No materials may be reproduced, duplicated, and/or distributed in any form or format without the prior written authorization of the author.16 What Can I Do? BE INFORMED - Inquire About Available Processes BE INFORMED - Inquire About Available Processes STAY INFORMED – Keep abreast of Available Processes STAY INFORMED – Keep abreast of Available Processes SPREAD THE WORD – Share With School Personnel & Parents SPREAD THE WORD – Share With School Personnel & Parents PROMOTE - Encourage use of processes by schools and parents PROMOTE - Encourage use of processes by schools and parents PRACTICE - Incorporate conflict resolution routinely PRACTICE - Incorporate conflict resolution routinely BE AWARE – Know own experiences, limitations, biases, skills BE AWARE – Know own experiences, limitations, biases, skills ADVOCATE FOR IMPROVEMENT – Movement “Upstream” ADVOCATE FOR IMPROVEMENT – Movement “Upstream”

17 Copywritten By Synergy Resolutions, Inc All rights reserved. No materials may be reproduced, duplicated, and/or distributed in any form or format without the prior written authorization of the author.17 Resources … AEEE AEEE Advocates for Educational Equity & Excellence Advocates for Educational Equity & Excellence CADRE CADRE Consortium For Appropriate Dispute Resolution in Education Consortium For Appropriate Dispute Resolution in Education ACR ACR Association For Conflict Resolution – Education Section (Check For Local Chapters) Association For Conflict Resolution – Education Section (Check For Local Chapters)

18 Copywritten By Synergy Resolutions, Inc All rights reserved. No materials may be reproduced, duplicated, and/or distributed in any form or format without the prior written authorization of the author.18 What To Remember … EMPOWER ! EDUCATE ! ENABLE ! Our Youngest and Most Vulnerable


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