Select Language: English | Spanish
Menu Close

(7.5) Does the district have to provide aids and services to assist my child’s integration? What if the district says that providing those aids and services is too expensive?

(7.5) Does the district have to provide aids and services to assist my child’s integration? What if the district says that providing those aids and services is too expensive?

The district must provide supplementary aids and services to accommodate the special educational needs of students with disabilities in integrated environments. The court in Oberti v. Bd. of Educ. stated that a district must take meaningful steps to include students with disabilities in regular classrooms with supplementary aids and services. [789 F.Supp. at 1322.]

In another federal appellate court opinion, Daniel R.R. v. El Paso Independent School District, the court said:

The [law] does not permit states to make mere token gestures to accommodate handicapped students; its requirement for modifying and supplementing regular education is broad. [874 F.2d at 1036 (5th Cir. 1989).] Another federal court opinion, Roncker v. Walter, contained the following statements on the LRE issue:

In a case where [a] segregated facility is considered [academically] superior, the court should determine whether the services which make the placement superior could be feasibly provided in a non-segregated setting. If they can, the placement in the segregated school would be inappropriate under the [law].

The Roncker court also noted that:

Cost is a proper factor to consider since excessive spending on one handicapped child deprives other handicapped children. Cost is no defense, however, if the school district has failed to use its funds to provide a proper continuum of alternative placements for handicapped children. The provision of such alternative placements benefits all handicapped children. [700 F.2d at 1058 (6th Cir. 1983).]

While the court in Holland decided that cost was a consideration in determining the appropriate placement for a child, it found that providing a part-time instructional aide and making academic curriculum modifications would not cost more than a special education placement. [Holland, 14 F.3d at 1402.]

Insufficient funds is not a legally sufficient reason for refusing to provide needed services, except, perhaps, when the costs would significantly impact the education of other students in the district.