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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — For the second time in the last month, a family has filed a civil rights complaint against New Hanover County Schools.

New Hanover County Schools Assistant Superintendent Rick Holliday says complaints filed with the US Department of Education’s Office of Civil Right (OCR) are fairly routine for school districts. He says NHCS receives five or six each year. He says what’s not routine is how the two most recent have been handled in the media. Dr. Holliday says the school district never sees OCR complaints. Instead, he says OCR usually sends a letter alerting the district to the nature of the complaint and often asking for data. Holliday says OCR then handles the investigation and follow up.

According to the group NC Fear Free Education, the family of a child enrolled in the school district filed a 98-page complaint yesterday with OCR. The complaint, the group says, chronicles specific incidents of discrimination listing times, dates and witnesses to the events.

“The reason we filed this Office of Civil Rights complaint is because our child is entitled to, under federal law, a free and appropriate public education just like non-disabled peers,” a parent of the child, who wishes to remain anonymous, said in a statement. “This means that our child is entitled to participate with non-disabled peers without being excluded from school functions, field trips and curriculum.”

According to part of the complaint released by NC Fear Free Education, the family says the boy was discriminated against for various reasons, including allegations that teachers did not follow his individualized education plan, accommodate his needs by using assistive technologies, not providing homework, excluding him from a field trip and even making fun of him.

Dr. Holliday said because the district has not received any information on the complaint and because of privacy laws, the school district cannot comment on this specific complaint.

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40 Comments on "Family of disabled student files complaint against New Hanover Co. Schools"

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Speaking Out Knowing the parent & the child
2015 years 11 months ago

Specifically A: the child is not retarded. He has autism, B. He is Not a behavior problem either. He is a loving boy. C. The reason the boys parents filed this complaint was because the school who, by all accounts had an autism program @ roland Grise did not include this child in specific events. These events include but are not limited to: A teacher decideds it is not necessary to send a science & social studies book home becasue they have “decided” what the kid could learn even though @ previous school &… Read more »

2015 years 11 months ago

Many are suggesting that segregating disabled children to private schools would be preferable, but many things which seem as if they should work in theory do not work in practice. Private schools and segregated classrooms are statistically the most dangerous, even deadly for the disabled population according to the GAO and other reports of child injury and death due to institutional mistreatment. Private schools and classrooms are where most of the severe abuse takes place, most likely because 1) the number of silent witnesses among children, or 2) children whose testimony could be discredited due to serious diagnoses, and 3)… Read more »

2015 years 11 months ago

I am glad for you that you can afford to send your child to a private school. If we were able to send our child to a school for children with special needs, it would probably cost upwards of $40,000 per year. If the school in question wrote an Individual Education Plan for this child, they are supposed to follow it. If they are not, the parents have the right to challenge the school. I imagine that they have been working with the school for a long time to get this worked out long before they… Read more »

2015 years 11 months ago

And where do you get Special Needs from this? (he is Disabled does not mean Special Needs, and a IEP is just to make some Accommodations for a Disabled person and it is Federal Mandated they receive an IEP if they wish to have one.

2015 years 11 months ago

Heres what you should do. Pull him out of the public school system and place him in a more appropriate school setting. Expensive? Yes, but we all must make sacrifices for our children. To continue to send your child to a school were he is tormented by others is just cruel. And to justify it by saying “our child is entitled to, under federal law, a free and appropriate public education just like non-disabled peers” does not make it any better. The fact is that lots of little kids are mean to each other. From… Read more »

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