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f/k/a archives . . . real opinions & real haiku

February 1, 2006

Court permits School Board’s ban on Members reading IEPs

Filed under: pre-06-2006 — David Giacalone @ 12:28 pm

The Jamestown, NY, School Board passed a resolution on September 14, 2004,

prohibiting any board member from reading the Individualized Education Program

(IEP) of a district student, in the process of deciding whether to approve or dis-

approve the IEP.  The Board Member must rely solely on a brief summary written

by the Committee that prepared the IEP.  In Deann Nelson vs Board of Education,

(WDNY, Hon. John T. Elfvin, S.U.S.D.J., Dkt. 2006-01-27  05-cv-0407, Jan. 27, 2006),

the federal district court in Buffalo, New York, decided last week that the 1st Amendment

rights of Board Member Deann Nelson, Ed.D, who was the only member actually reading

the IEPs, had not been violated by the ban, under either a retaliation theory or the theory

that her ability to perform the duties for which she was elected had been impaired. 

tiny check Note: Counsel for Plaintiff Deann Nelson is Arthur J. Giacalone,

the brother of this weblog’s Editor.

blackboard abc     


The Facts


As a member of the Jamestown, NY, School Board, Deann Nelson, Ed.D., is required to

vote on whether to approve the Individualized Education Program (IEP) prepared for each

child under the Individuals with Disabilities in Education Act (“the IDEA”), 20 U.S.C.

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