ERIC Number: ED498148
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2003-Oct
Reference Count: 10
The Involvement of Students in Their Special Education Mediations. Briefing Paper
Mueller, Melissa; Engiles, Anita; Peter, Marshall
Consortium for Appropriate Dispute Resolution in Special Education (CADRE)
This paper identifies some of the benefits and challenges that warrant consideration by families, educators, and dispute resolution practitioners as they create opportunities for students to participate in the mediation process. Perspectives and assumptions regarding student participation are captured and strategies are presented that may contribute to an improved process for all involved. While acknowledging potential challenges, the authors propose that students should participate as fully as possible in mediations regarding the educational services they receive. Given the variability in participants, processes, and practitioners, this discussion serves as an introduction to the complexities and nuances raised by the involvement of students in their mediations. Mandates of the Individuals with Disabilities Act as amended in 1997, peer mediation and student-led Individualized Education Program (IEP) meetings are discussed. The authors note that special education mediations typically include parents and educators; sometimes include advocates or attorneys, related services providers, and administrators; and less frequently include the students themselves and that a range of abilities and capacities to effectively engage in the mediation process must be considered for all participants, particularly when gauging the appropriateness and potential for student participation. Also highlighted are differences in culture, language, and educational background that may impact both the process and participation. The authors conclude that adjustments and accommodations may need to be made to make mediation a more useful process for all. Before and After the Mediation Process is appended.
Descriptors: Student Participation, Educational Background, Cultural Differences, Special Education, Individualized Education Programs, Disabilities, Conflict Resolution, Educational Strategies, Academic Accommodations (Disabilities), Federal Legislation, Individualized Transition Plans, High Schools, Caseworker Approach, Student Role, Guidelines, Grievance Procedures, Parent Participation, Meetings
Consortium for Appropriate Dispute Resolution in Special Education (CADRE). P.O. Box 51360, Eugene, OR 97405-0906. Tel: 541-686-5060; Web site: http://www.directionservice.org/cadre
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; High Schools
Sponsor: Special Education Programs (ED/OSERS), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Consortium for Appropriate Dispute Resolution in Special Education (CADRE), Eugene, OR.
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Individuals with Disabilities Education Act Amendments 1997