Tompkins Cortland Community College

PARA206 - Special Education Law & Advocacy


This is a paralegal elective course that will give students a background in education law with a focus on special education advocacy on behalf of public school children. Special education advocacy requires extensive knowledge of education law, disability needs, and the legal standards that apply. Participants will be introduced to the history of special education law, develop an understanding of key concepts of special education expressed in case law, understand educational evaluations, develop an understanding of the business of special education law, and learn the ethics of advocating for students with disabilities. The history of special education law is rooted in Brown v. Board of Education and is traced through legislative and judicial history to include the Education for All Handicapped Children Act, the IDEA, the IDEIA, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, through No Child Left Behind and the related other acts, such as the Every Student Succeeds Act. This course will focus on the substance and procedural aspects of federal and state education laws, rules and regulations for a law office paralegal as well as for a lay advocate. Topics will include pragmatic concerns such as dealing with children, parents, and school administrators. Prerequisite: PARA 130. 3 credits (3 Lec.) Spring semester.