Ensuring Equal Access
In re C.M.T. (Pa. Super. Ct., 2004)
In this child welfare case, court should have considered evidence that child’s attendance problem was related to her disability.
Serventi v. Bucks Technical High School (E.D. Pa., 2004)
This case established, under IDEA, right of children with disabilities to access to vocational-technical programs.
Eric H. ex rel. John H. v. Methacton Area School District (E.D. Pa., 2003)
Court held that child with acute lymphoblastic leukemia did not require school district to provide video teleconferencing equipment to receive a FAPE, but another child in different circumstances might require VTC for a FAPE.
Blount ex rel. Blount v. Lancaster-Lebanon Intermediate Unit (E.D. Pa., 2003)
Established legal entitlement of young children with disabilities to inclusive Early Intervention program in a regular preschool.
Girty ex rel. Girty v. School District of Valley Grove (W.D. Pa., 2001)
Sixth-grader with severe intellectual disabilities held to have right to continued inclusion in regular class setting.
Kellner v. School District of Philadelphia and PA Dept. of Ed. (E.D. Pa., 2000)
A settlement that requires school district to provide one-to-one support for children with mental health needs rather than simply referring them to MH system for services; resulted in PDE issuing statewide directive).
T.R. v. Kingwood Township Board of Education (3d Cir., 2000)
This case applies the “least restrictive environment” requirement of IDEA to preschool children.
A.S. v. Pittsburgh Public Schools (W.D. Pa.,1999)
Established new requirement that students facing disciplinary action in Pittsburgh Public Schools be screened to determine need for special education evaluation.
Bates-Booker v. Houstoun (E.D. Pa., 1998)
Eliminated the practice of Medicaid HMOs denying medically necessary services on ground that school districts should be providing the services under IDEA.
Sebastian I. v. Houstoun (E.D. Pa., 1998)
Resulted in Early Intervention services for several hundred infants and toddlers and significant reform of EI system.
Jill D. v. Snider (W.D. Pa., 1996)
Settlement requiring qualified hearing officers and timely decisions in DPW hearing system for children receiving Early Intervention services.
LeGare v. School District of Philadelphia (E.D. Pa., 1994)
Consent decree established new policy and procedure for inclusion of students with disabilities in specialized and magnet high school programs which includes different application review process and waiver of certain testing on a case-by-case basis; resolution of School Reform Commission extends this entitlement to English Language Learners.
Cordero by Bates v. Com. of Pa. Dept. of Ed., 795 F. Supp. 1352 (M.D. Pa., 1992)
Established state’s responsibility under IDEA to ensure access to adequate range of placements for children with special education needs; resulted in new interagency requirements and protocol that continues to be implemented statewide.
Nancy M. v. Scanlon (E.D. Pa., 1987)
A class action lawsuit that struck down a state statute limiting access of children in foster care to public education services.
Steven M. v. Gilhool (E.D. Pa., 1988)
This class action lawsuit struck down a statute limiting access to educational services for children with disabilities abandoned by parents from another state.
Stopping the School to Prison Pipeline
Lyons v. Penn Hills School District, 723 A.2d 1073 (Pa. Commw. Ct., 1999)
Held that school board exceeded its authority by adopting “zero tolerance” policy for weapons.
Raffensperger v. Hempfield School District (Pa. Commw. Ct., 1998)
Held that school board improperly commingled prosecutorial and adjudicatory functions when superintendent, who had testified against student at expulsion hearing and then was present at school board’s deliberations on the matter.
T.B. v. School District of Philadelphia (E.D. Pa., 1997)
Required that students facing disciplinary action must be screened to determine need for special education evaluation.