We need your voice! Re: GNET's
Information from Leslie Lipson at GAO regarding the GNET programs. We need your voice! Please share widely!!
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Carol Sadler, Special Education Consultant/Advocate
GA Advocacy Office PLSP I Graduate
1105 Rock Pointe Look
Woodstock, GA 30188
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"There is nothing more unequal than the equal treatment of unequal people." ---- Thomas Jefferson
“Refrain from Restraining, Secluding and Corporal Punishment & Aversives are Abusive and Dehumanizing” ---- Carol Sadler, Advocate
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CONFIDENTIAL AND PRIVILEGED
Information contained in this communication is confidential and privileged. It is not meant to represent legal or medical advice, but rather advice given based on my knowledge as a trained Parent Advocate by the GA Advocacy Office, Council of Parent Advocates & Attorneys, CHADD, LDA, the GA DOE Parent Mentor program as an invited guest and the special education attorneys that I often work with on educational matters. Please do not forward without my permission.
Dear Parents/Families, (please forward to your networks)
If your child is currently attending a GNET program, has been in a GNET program, or has struggled to get quality supports for behavioral-related disabilities in your neighborhood school, you are likely aware that the United States Department of Justice filed a Complaint against the State of Georgia about Georgia violating the American’s with Disabilities Act by operating a segregated, state-wide program offering an inferior education on August 23, 2016: http://bit.ly/2bxN2Em.
In somewhat related news, the Georgia Department of Education (GADOE) is in the preliminary stages of drafting a new state rule governing the GNET program and services, and they want to hear from you. They are hosting three regional feedback meetings to get your input on the proposed draft rule regarding how Georgia provides supports for behavioral-related disabilities and the current GNETS programs.
Below are the dates and times for the feedback meetings:
Gainesville, GA Date: October 24, 2016 Time: 3pm – 6pm
Tifton, GA Date: October 27, 2016 Time: 3pm – 6pm
Fayetteville, GA Date: October 28, 2016 Time: 3pm – 6pm
At these meetings, speakers will have 3 minutes to share their thoughts on the draft of the new proposed rule. If you cannot attend any of these meetings and want to provide public feedback, you can email your comments to GNETrule@doe.k12.ga.us and firstname.lastname@example.org .(Please see the attached flyer for more specific details about the meetings. Also attached is the new draft rule and the current rule.)
GAO would like to support families as you develop your speaking points, and invite you to join us in one of two informational conference calls, where we will discuss the draft proposed rule and upcoming feedback meetings. These conference calls will be held on Thursday October 20, 2016 at 12pm -1pm and 6pm-7pm. If you are interested in joining us for one of the conference calls, please email email@example.com with your RSVP and we will send the call-in information.
As a preview to the draft proposed rule and our conference calls, the draft proposed rule does not do away with the GNETS as a separate and distinct program where students who need behavioral-related support "belong" to the GNETS program and attend GNETS classrooms or separate buildings, nor does it change the current segregated funding structure; however, it does give the option of local school districts to request assistance from the GNETS program to provide "GNETS services" to students in their own zoned/neighborhood schools. However, it gives no guidance or structure for parents or schools to access these supports. Again, please see the attached for the text of the new draft rule. Additionally, giving comment about your experience struggling to receive appropriate services in a GNETS or at a local neighborhood school would be helpful.
We hope to hear from you on a conference call this Thursday.
Leslie K. Lipson
Georgia Advocacy Office
One West Court Square, Suite 625
Decatur, GA 30030