This article in Chalkbeat describes what many teachers, educational advocates and parents already know all too well: students are experiencing more behavorial challenges as they return to school buildings this fall during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Unfortunately, schools appear ill-equipped to respond. There is a dramatic increase in the number of reports of bullying, harassment, disruptive behavior, disciplinary referrals, and restraint and seclusion. Students with disabilities are particularly vulnerable, whether they are experiencing an uptick in disability-related behaviors themselves, or being victimized by other students or staff.
Students with disabilities have rights when they are thrust into these difficult situations, but families are often not aware what those rights are or what steps to take in response. Families of students with disabilities who are subjected to bullying, harassment, discipline, restraint or seclusion may benefit from consulting with an attorney to protect your child’s legal rights, and ensure that the school responds appropriately and puts needed supports in place going forward.