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Advancing the Human & Civil Rights of People with Disabilities in Illinois

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EFE’s Recent Work

EFE halts rush to graduation

As high school graduation approached, our 18-year-old client felt he didn’t have the skills to succeed in community college. We sought a transition year from the school district. At an Individualized Education Program (IEP) meeting, our client asked to stay in school so he could learn to “read a passage and write an essay,” which he understood were necessary skills for college. His IEP team denied his request and moved his graduation forward. We then sought to delay his graduation (and loss of eligibility) so the young man could obtain services he needed to make the transition to college. During mediation, the school district agreed to provide one year of weekly one-on-one tutoring while our client worked on a certificate program at the community college. Under the agreement, he would also receive an assistive technology evaluation and help studying for the driver’s education written exam.

Transition services restored

A 19-year-old student with a genetic disorder and severe learning disorder was denied any transition services after moving school districts. Pro bono counsel from Neal Geber & Eisenberg negotiated for a thorough transition and vocational evaluation, which led to a detailed IEP and transition program including independent living skills, employment skills and travel training.  As a result of Neal Gerber’s advocacy with Equip for Equality, the student will learn the skills he needs to become a happy, independent and employed member of the community.

A grandmother wins with help from EFE

The grandmother and legal guardian of a 17-year-old student called our Special Education Helpline because his district was insisting he graduate in December.  This student, enrolled in a specialized autism program, was not prepared to graduate. We worked with the family to present a strong argument for continued services, including a psychologist who discussed the student’s psychosis and concluded, “The world is a very confusing place for [student] and remains a mystery to him.” With our support, the grandmother was prepared to advocate for her son at an IEP meeting, where the team agreed not to graduate her grandson. This grandmother was “elated” that the school would provide much-needed transition services.


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Last updated: April 23, 2014

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