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IEP/BSEA Hearing Process for Those Working with Special Needs Children

special-needs-planning-attorney-Wellesley-MASpecial Education attorney Heather Gold visited Margolis & Bloom on Monday, February 6th 2017, as part of our monthly First Monday Lunch for Professionals. Heather represents parents who have children with special needs in connection with the IEP/BSEA (Board of Special Education Appeals) Hearing process.

Heather discussed why clinicians are important to the process, pitfalls both clinicians and parents should avoid, and what legal strategy parents and clinicians should take in planning for a BSEA hearing.

She said that it is important for parents to choose a clinician who has been through the hearing process before, and recommended steps that should be taken to obtain the best result possible.  These include:

  1. Picking the right clinician/advocate for their child
  2. Having a legal strategy in place that assumes a hearing will be required
  3. Giving the school a chance to address the child’s needs/issues before taking any action.

Heather explained that for purposes of credibility, it is very important that the parents show that they worked with the school district to figure out what is best for their child, rather than coming to the school with a pre-determined opinion.

The audience—a mix of legal professionals, clinicians, and parents of children with special needs—appreciated Heather’s legal knowledge and insight, and came away better equipped to deal with the complexities surrounding this process.


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