News You Can Use: KCS Third Quarter 2017 BSEA Commentary Now Available!

Don’t miss our commentary on the Bureau of Special Education Appeals (“BSEA”) decisions and rulings for the third quarter of 2017, written by KCS attorneys Eileen Hagerty and Alicia Warren for the Massachusetts Special Education Reporter.  The commentary, available on our website, offers summaries of recent cases and discussion of trends, along with useful tips for parents and practitioners.

As the comment headings show, the range of subjects is wide and the outcomes are varied.  Among the topics discussed:

  • Andover and Quincy: Beware – in this case, settlement offers and rejections (ordinarily not admissible in evidence) were deemed relevant to a compensatory education claim.
  • Nantucket: A cautionary tale about expert reports and testimony – avoid these pitfalls!
  • Waltham: A welcome development in the BSEA’s understanding of the law of privilege.  Here, the hearing officer ruled that a non-lawyer advocate’s records may enjoy protection from disclosure under the work product doctrine; therapeutic/medical records remain susceptible to discovery when the student’s mental or emotional health is at issue.
  • Worcester, Fitchburg, and DCF: What happens when a district tries to obtain confidential DCF materials?
  • Medford Public Schools: Credibility issues did not prevent entry of summary judgment, in case concerning sufficiency of parents’ notice of unilateral Carroll School placement.
  • Minuteman Vocational Technical School: A vocational technical school was not required to provide a free appropriate public education (FAPE) to a student whom it had not admitted.

The commentaries always provide interesting reading.  Please take a look!

Eileen Hagerty is a partner and Alicia Warren is an associate in the Special Education & Disability Rights practice group at Kotin, Crabtree & Strong, LLP in Boston, Massachusetts.

 

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