Parents Say CPS Ignores Hundreds Of Special-Needs Kids

(CBS) – Some parents call it a crisis: Hundreds of kids, in need of special education services, aren’t getting them.

CBS 2’s Dana Kozlov reports.

It’s been a school year of ups but many downs for 6-year-old Laila Fawley.

Her mom says Laila, who has autism, was thriving after three years in a Chicago Public Schools classroom, coupled with services and goals in the child’s Individual Education Plan.

When CPS took Laila’s IEP away, she regressed.

“I was angry, I was disappointed,” the mother says. “I began fighting.”

Despite an autism diagnosis from three medical professionals, CPS hasn’t budged.

Christine Palmieri’s son miles also has autism and a habit of trying to leave his school building.

Even with an IEP and that history of leaving school, it took six months for her and a lawyer to get Miles a classroom aide.

Advocates say both are part of a bigger special education problem with funding at its core.

“The barriers that we are seeing families face, these all violate the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act,” says Amy Zimmerman of Legal Council for Health Justice.

A CPS spokesperson says they’ve changed some special ed paperwork requirements, to try and remedy one issue. As for the other, specific concerns, they were not addressed.

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