Retaliation is an act of discrimination, coercion, intimidation or threat against a person for the purpose of interfering with the exercise of a protected right. Retaliation is illegal under both federal and state laws, including Section 504 and the ADA.
In addition, California Education Code Section 56046
protects an employee or contractor of a school district or other local
educational agency who advocates, or assists the parent in advocating for a
student with exceptional needs to obtain services or accommodations for the
student. An educational agency is barred
from retaliating against the helpful staff member for the purpose of
interfering with the action of that person.
[Cal Ed. Code Sec. 56046(a).]
In most cases, retaliation is inferred from surrounding circumstances, in which case four questions are asked:
- Did the person engage in a legally protected activity?
- Was the person the target of adverse action?
- Was there a connection between the protected activity and the adverse action to support an inference of retaliation?
- Did the school identify a legitimate, non-retaliatory reason for the adverse action?
For a more detailed explanation of retaliation, please see: https://www.disabilityrightsca.org/publications/is-the-school-retaliating-a-guide-to-your-rights.