COPAA thanks each of you for your efforts to inform the vote on the new Secretary and we urge you to continue to raise your voice! As a result of our collective effort, Secretary DeVos and our elected officials are very aware of the strength and commitment that exists across the country for students with disabilities and their families. COPAA remains deeply committed to our mission and vision for our children and we must all continue our work with policymakers, Secretary DeVos, and her staff to realize our policy priorities:
Safeguarding the protections of IDEA, Section 504 and ADA;
Ensuring excellence and equity in education for all children;
Enforcing State compliance with the IDEA and ESSA;
Leading initiatives that stop the overuse of exclusionary disciplinary practices, especially seclusion and restraint;
Fully funding the IDEA;
Protecting IDEA formula funding to states from being used as a source to pay for federal voucher programs;
Ensuring federal public education funds are not used to pay for federal voucher programs;
Ending discrimination toward students with disabilities in voucher and charter school programs; and,
Creating seamless transition for students with disabilities from infancy to post-secondary life.
Keep up your good work in contacting your elected officials and speaking with the media. Yours are the stories that bring our policy positions to life. COPAA stands ready to help the new Secretary to understand and implement her responsibilities under federal law and respect the true needs of students with disabilities and their families in every action she takes. Parents and families of students with disabilities are resilient and no strangers to doing whatever it takes to protect their children.
As stated to the press today, COPAA will continue to fight to protect the rights of students with disabilities and we will work with Secretary DeVos and her staff to get the best possible outcomes for our children. They deserve this commitment and we will settle for no less.