Discrimination and violation of IDEA? State Law's new requirement - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 4 Old 06-26-2012, 07:45 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ok, this just passed and was signed into law in our state, and IMHO it seems like it is discriminatory and a violation of IDEA, et. al.

 

Let me preface this by saying I am not against the idea, but feel that children with special needs are being unfairly treated compared to their non-special need counter parts.  

 

 

My state just passed a law that will require ALL children on an IEP (current or who are in the future placed on one) to under go at the parents/care givers expense a comprehensive eye exam every year.  Again, this new law applies ONLY to children who are on or being placed on an IEP.  The state has put strict regulations on who can provide the exam as well.  We are not talking the take your child to the doctor and see if they can read/see the chart and if not get a referral - we are talking full blow comprehensive eye exam with pupil dilation, glacoma testing, macular degeneration testing, eye pressure test, etc.  Further the law has put the burden to pay for such comprehensive exam that they are requiring all IEP students to take on the parents/care givers and specifically state that the State and School district ARE NOT responsible for the payment of costs associated with said exam.

 

 

I feel this is discriminatory because it is ONLY applied to students who are on an IEP/disabled.  Students who do not have an IEP are under no such requirement.

 

I believe this violates at least the principle behind IDEA, et. al., in that those laws are in place to identify and ensure that children with disabilities are able to receive a free fair and appropriate education regardless of their disability.  IDEA, et. al., was not created to identify families that the State needs to put additional burdens upon, but rather to put a burden upon the State to ensure that children are given an education.

 

 

Now, my other concern is that there is no listed "penalty" for a parent failing to do the required eye exam, but I am worried that if a parent does not that a school district has the authority to turn the parents into children's protective services for violation of the law and neglecting the needs of their child by their refusal to do so.

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#2 of 4 Old 06-27-2012, 07:35 AM
 
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You're talking about Ohio, right?  Do you mean SB 316? Do you have a link explaining this requirement, because what you posted is not how I understood it when I read the text of the bill.

 

Current law requires that a student is required to have a comprehensive eye exam (by an optometrist or an ophthalmologist) with 3 months of the FIRST time he/she receives special education services.  But the law also states that students who do not get the exam cannot be denied services.  This law has been in place since about 2004. 

 

The changes in SB316 require school districts to report EVERY YEAR the number of students who this requirement applies to and the number of students who comply with this requirement. I did not see a requirement for a new eye exam for every year.

 

A different law requires that schools perform a hearing and vision screen EVERY YEAR for students who receive special education services (odd grade years only for all other students).  However, parents can opt out of this screening by writing a letter.  We have opted DS out of this screening ever since I had an argument with the school nurse about how he has a documented vision impairment and will always fail the vision screening, so all the screening does is create extra paperwork for everyone (the nurse, me, and my son's pediatric ophthalmologist).

 

Are you finding different information? If so, please share a link. I'm eager to read it and see how it affects my child.

 

If I remembered incorrectly and you are not in Ohio, please forgive me.  I would still be interested in learning more about your new law.


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#3 of 4 Old 06-27-2012, 08:02 AM - Thread Starter
 
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It is Ohio, and I do not ever recall the law previously requiring IEP students to be subject to an eye exam.

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#4 of 4 Old 06-27-2012, 08:22 AM
 
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It's been on the books since 2004 or so.  But I don't think districts have really done much to emphasize it.  When DS qualified for special needs preschool, I had to sign a paper stating that I had been informed that DS was required to get a comprehensive eye exam, if he had not received one in the past 12 months (I think it was 12 months, it might have been shorter). I never had to submit anything to actually prove that he had seen an eye doctor and the district never mentioned it again. It was kinda buried in all the other paperwork.  It sticks out in my mind only because DS was already wearing glasses at that age, so I remember commenting that he was already under the care of an ophthalmologist. 


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