Advocacy and Dispute Resolution
426: Special Education Law and Advocacy
This course, which meets once a week for two hours, will deal in depth with current and timely issues in the education of children with disabilities. Students will learn federal and State statutory and regulatory procedures in determining eligibility for services, evaluation, development of the individualized education program, and provision of services in the least restrictive environment. The education of special needs children from early childhood through post-secondary transition will be addressed. The course will focus on advocacy, statutory and regulatory compliance, and dispute resolution. Students will form teams assuming the roles of parent/student advocate, school administrators, and school service providers in a variety of simulated activities throughout the semester, including: participation in eligibility and IEP conferences; disciplinary manifestation determination reviews; resolution sessions, mediation, and pre-hearing due process procedures; and determining Section 504 eligibility and developing and implementing a Section 504 service plan.
Students may also take the course for three credits by participating in additional small group seminar meetings to discuss course topics of interest in more detail. A student interested in the additional credit hour would have the option to write an additional paper of publishable quality that could be published in Loyola’s e-journals, conduct a training for parents or professionals through an outside organization, or complete other additional course assignments of interest to the student and approved by the instructor.