That's the weighty and important issue before Judge Marra, who just cleared the way for trial on this long-simmering claim that seeks to hold the school board to its statutory responsibilities on behalf of autistic children:
Here, this Court has determined that a trial is necessary to resolve factual issues with respect to Plaintiff’s IDEA claim. Further, Ms. Shermett, a representative of the School Board, testified in her deposition that curriculum is not discussed with the parents during the IEP process, and that if a parent wants the team to consider a curriculum other than the one used by the School Board, it will not be considered. Shermett Dep., p. 75-77 (DE 458-5). Ms. Shermett also testified that the School Board trains its employees on the IEP process. Id. An inference may be made from this testimony that the School Board is aware of its obligations,12 but that it acts with deliberate indifference to the appropriateness of the education a child will receive as a result of the IEP process when no consideration is given to the options other than the predetermined ones.13 Therefore, a genuine issue of material fact exists as to Plaintiff’s Rehabilitation Act claim. The Court will conduct a hybrid trial: bench trial on Counts I and III, and a jury trial on Count II. See Loren F. ex rel. Fisher v. Atlanta Indep. Sch. Sys., 349 F.3d 1309, 1320 (11th Cir. 2003).Judge Marra also ruled he would consider class certification, if the proposed class was more narrowed tailored.
Broweird County -- it's time to do the right thing.