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Costly dispute between school district and deaf student continues

It appears that school districts are often willing to spend a great deal of money in defending against education lawsuits.  One such lawsuit involving an out-of-state school district's alleged failure to provide educational services for a deaf student has been fought for over four years.  The lawsuit originally began in state court and looks like it will continue in federal court as well.

The school district reportedly has paid out in excess of $440,000 in legal fees and is challenging a court order that it pays the legal fees for the plaintiff as well.  These fees would add up to an additional $470,000.  The school district is also fighting another lawsuit based upon claims that it violated this student's civil rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

The school district has declined to have the federal matter heard in mediation. The legal fights have continued despite adverse rulings going against the school district.

The student's attorney has argued that the failure of the school district to meet her client's special needs led to a violation of his civil rights. Under the Rehabilitation Act, school districts must not discriminate against any student because of a disability. In failing to follow the provisions of this act, the school district can also be deprived of federal funding. This particular school district receives close to $670,000 in federal funds each year for its education of children with special needs.

Whether in California or any other locations, the education of our children is one of the most essential roles that the government plays and the denial of a child to receive that education is thus a vital matter. Dedicated education lawyers can assist parents and children to make certain that no student is deprived of the right to be provided a decent education.

Source: Yakima Herald, "Despite rising costs, Grandview schools still fighting lawsuit," Phil Ferolito, March 26, 2014

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