“Establishes office of the Special Education Ombudsman in the  Department of Education“

NJEA is proud to support A-1103 (Vainieri Huttle, Singleton, Benson).  This legislation would establish the Office of the Special Education Ombudsman in the Department of Education as a resource to support parents, students and educators by providing information about special education rights and services.
When a child is going through the evaluation process to determine eligibility for special education services, or when a child is classified as needing special education services, it can be a very trying time for parents.  Aside from emotional issues and concern for their child, many parents feel helpless as they attempt to understand their rights and navigate through the various services that are available.  Additionally, many educators often have questions regarding special education regulations and the educational programs that are available.  Having one source to turn to for information can be extremely helpful in addressing those concerns.
A-1103 would require the Commissioner of Education to appoint a special education ombudsman who would act as a neutral facilitator between parents, educators and school districts to help solve problems related to special education in a confidential and efficient manner.  The ombudsman would also be required to submit an annual report to the State Board of Education and the Commissioner of Education, which would include a summary of the services the ombudsman provided during the year, and any specific recommendations the ombudsman deems appropriate and necessary concerning the State’s implementation of special education procedures and services.

NJEA urges you to vote YES on A-1103.