Legal Memorandum: Special Education for Classified Students

Issue: Whether an Administrative Law Judge may consider an unaccredited school as an appropriate placement under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and New Jersey law.

Area of Law: Education Law
Keywords: Special education; Classified students; Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
Jurisdiction: Federal, New Jersey
Cited Cases: None
Cited Statutes: N.J.A.C. 6A:14-4.3'(b)(11), § 6A:14-4.3; N.J.S.A. 18A:46-14; N.J.A.C. 6A:14-1.1(d); N.J.A.C. § 6A:14-4.3
Date: 11/01/2011

N.J.A.C. 6A:14-4.3(b)(11) permits consideration of any placement that, while not satisfying the preceding program options, nonetheless offers “Instruction in other appropriate settings according to N.J.A.C. 6A:14-1.1(d).”

The IDEA and New Jersey law contemplate a variety of placement options available for the special education of classified students.  N.J.A.C. § 6A:14-4.3, implementing the Naples Act, N.J.S.A. 18A:46-14, provides:

(b)  If it is determined that a student with a disability cannot remain in the general education setting with supplementary aids and services for all or a portion of the school day, a full continuum of alternative placements as set forth below shall be available to meet the needs of the student. Alternative educational program options include placement in the following:

1.      Single subject resource programs outside the general education class;

2.      A special class program in the student’s local school district;

3.      A special education program in another local school district;

4.      A special education program in a vocational and technical school;

5.      A special education program in the following settings

i.        A county special services school district;

ii.      An educational services commission;

iii.    A jointure commission; and

iv.    A New Jersey approved private school for students with disabilities or an out-of-State school for students with disabilities in the continental United States approved by the department of education in […]

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