Max Stieve
Case 6
1-S-1 P-1 v. D Turlington
United States Court of Appeals Fifth Circuit
Background:
In this case in Florida a group of special education students were expelled for committing acts that included masturbation or sexual acts against fellow students to willful defiance of authority, insubordination, vandalism, and the use of profane language. These acts of misconducts occurred only because of their mental capability which they had little control over. With that the case they shouldn’t have been expelled and the argument was that the school didn’t have the authority to do so. All students are given a reasonable education and with the students being expelled their right to an education was being denied.

Decision and Rationale:
The court ruled that the expulsion of special education students was ok and that it’s based on a case to case basis. In cases where the students truly had no control over their actions then expulsion was not the answer but it was found in some of the cases of this group that the actions was not a result of their handicap and the expulsion was not reversed.

Impact on Teaching:
As we learned from our SPED class the issue of an appropriate education is extremely important for educators. We have to follow the guidelines for 504s, IEPs, IDEA, and many other acronyms. The parents know their kid’s just like we do, but we have to decide how to intervene and improve their child’s education. Parents sometimes don’t know all of the literature behind these decisions and are unprepared when these meetings go on. We have to explore all options during these huge decision making processes and have to choose what is best for the child’s education. Also in cases like this, documentation is the key. Always take note of whether a student is acting out of the ordinary to have evidence when there is a meeting for the student.

Applicable Quiz Question:
T/F
A student can be expelled if their handicap has nothing to do with what they got in trouble for.