Special Education Attorneys as Invested Adults
Courts in Washington, DC may appoint attorneys to handle the special education matters of children in neglect and delinquency matters. Special Education attorneys must be well-trained and informed regarding the procedural and substantive law and cognizant of the psycho-social issues which may be impacting their clients. In DC, the right to special education extends to and in some cases beyond the 22nd birthday. In those instances Special Education attorneys may be appointed in criminal cases or other cases outside the jurisdiction of the Family Court. See, Attorney Practice Standards for Special Education Panel Attorneys, Superior Court of the District of Columbia Family Court, at 5, fn2. Special education attorneys maintain a working knowledge and familiarity with relevant federal and local education laws and regulations; conduct a thorough investigation of all necessary and relevant information pertaining to education matters through records request, school visits, and interviews with school personnel; request evaluations to identify the child’s educational needs; attend and participate in school-related meetings and conferences; pursue appropriate legal remedies such as due process hearings, requests for mediations and federal court proceedings; develop legal strategies and secure appropriate support services for the youth.