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COPAA Tells ED: “A Delay to Implement Disproportionality Regs is Unwarranted and Harms Children”

Monday, May 14, 2018   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Denise Marshall

The Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates (COPAA), the leading organization representing children with disabilities seeking a free, appropriate education in the least restrictive environment, today filed formal comments in opposition to the U.S. Department of Education’s proposal seeking to delay regulations on significant disproportionality in the identification of students of color as eligible for special education. 


In a tightly-worded 16-page letter to the U.S. Department of Education (ED), COPAA asserted that ED has improperly limited the comments it will consider, that the proposed delay is unwarranted by any change of circumstances since the regulations were made final in 2016, that ED clearly has the authority to regulate on such potential racial discrimination, that the proposed postponement harms children with disabilities and children of color, that ED's proposed cost-benefit analysis is inaccurate and distorted, and that ED is not seeking comments with an open mind.


Denise Marshall, COPAA’s executive director stated, “the data are clear that children of color are designated as eligible for special education, segregated in school settings, and disciplined at a far higher rate that White children. COPAA urges ED to stop wasting precious time and retain the July 1, 2018 compliance date for the 2016 final regulations implementing the Individuals with Disabilities Act requirement addressing significant disproportionality. It is ED's responsibility to act to protect the civil rights of students with swiftness and certainty. Our children's lives depend on it.”


Read COPAA’s full letter to ED.

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