ASK - Advocates for Special Kids
"Parents helping parents to understand special education"

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Advocates for Special Kids - ASK Volume 3, Issue 1

September 2003 Newsletter "Back to School Edition"


"Back To School 2003-2004"

Amidst all the recent news about comings and goings of Superintendents and financial ups and downs of MBUSD, one item has yet to make the news, i.e., this past July, the United States Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights (OCR) notified MBUSD and families that OCR would proceed to resolve a complaint previously filed by MBUSD families.

OCR’s letter includes the claim that MCHS fails "to offer a full continuum of placement options designed to meet [students’] individual educational needs as adequately as the needs of nondisabled students;"that students with disabilities are denied "an equal opportunity to graduate from high school" and are not provided with instruction in all areas of the core curriculum and in all essential academic standards; that MBUSD has "denied students with disabilities access to CP, AP and honors courses by refusing to provide accommodations or modifications for students with disabilities in these classes, and by informing their parents that students who receive accommodations and modifications will not receive graduation credit for the courses."

Additional allegations which include MBUSD’s failure to appropriately implement IEPs, to provide information necessary for parental decision-making, students not being in their least restrictive environment [LRE] and the exclusion of students with disabilities from CAHSEE and retention remediation programs relate to the entire school district.

OCR staff are scheduled for an onsite visit to MBUSD in the next few weeks and they should hear parents’ concerns. A "Synopsis of Complaint Allegations" from the original complaint is posted on ASK’s website at under "Documents." If you wish to provide input, document your student’s issues in writing using the "Synopsis" as a guide, and forward it ASAP to Deborah Blair Porter, 1156 5th Street, Manhattan Beach, 90266.

This is a rare opportunity for MBUSD families to make a difference, not only for the education of their own children, but for future MBUSD students. It is also a chance to make our school community a better, more inclusive place for ALL our children. PLEASE SPEAK OUT!

Hometown Fair - Saturday, October 4 and Sunday, October 5, 2003

ASK Snapple Booth - Help ASK Raise Money and Awareness!

Volunteer! Volunteer! Volunteer!

We need YOU at our Hometown Fair booth! We need donations of $$$$ and TIME!

We need volunteers for both Saturday and Sunday!


We need help with delivering inventory! We need ice chests!

We need able-bodied DADS and kids who want to practice making change!!

Booth shifts both days are 9:30-12:00, 11:30-2:00, 1:30-4:00 and 3:30-6:00

Contact Susan Viker or Deborah Porter (e-mail at;

Upcoming ASK Meetings

[All ASK Meetings are at the Pacific Christian Center, 1403 Pacific Avenue, Manhattan Beach.]

09/29/03 - 7 PM: ASK Meeting: "Futures Planning:" adult transition featuring Twilla Elliot, MBUSD Transition Program, El Camino College; and transition to public schools from Early Start/early intervention programs for ages 1-3, featuring Mary Ann Clark, SW SELPA program/transition specialist.

10/27/03 - 7PM: ASK Meeting: Parents Only: Networking and Support

11/24/03 - 7PM: ASK Meeting: Chime Pre-School and Inclusive Education: Julie Fabrocini of Chime Pre-School will speak about her San Fernando Valley pre-school and the inclusive education it provides.


01/26/04 - 7 PM: ASK Meeting: Ins & Outs of Central Auditory Processing Disorder (CAPD): Rosalyn Firemark will speak about her work as an audiologist and her work related to CAPD.

02/23/04 - 7PM: ASK Meeting: Parents Only: Networking and Support

03/29/04 - 7PM: ASK Meeting: Public Meeting and Lecture - Speaker to be announced

04/26/04 - 7PM: ASK Meeting: Parents Only: Networking and Support

05/24/04 - 7PM: ASK Meeting: Public Meeting and Lecture - Speaker to be announced

06/28/04 - 7 PM: ASK Meeting: Parents Only: Networking and Support

ASK is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping parents with issues related to special education. To contact ASK, call (310) 480-9310. ASK does not accept payment for providing assistance to families, rather raises money in furtherance of its efforts through fundraising andaccepting donations. We also accept sponsorships of our newsletter, covering typical costs of with printing and mailing the newsletter. Your sponsorship will be gratefully acknowledged on the newsletter cover. If you wish to donate toASK or sponsor an issue, please contact ASK or speak to an ASK Board member.

Advocates for Special Kids - September 2003, Volume 3, Issue 1

Advocates for Special Kids
c/o 3109 Walnut Avenue
Manhattan Beach, CA 90266

Families and friends of children receiving special
education in Manhattan Beach & the South Bay"

"Disability is a natural part of the human experience and in
no way diminishes the right of individuals to participate in or
contribute to society. Improving educational results for children
with disabilities is an essential element of our national policy of
ensuring equality of opportunity, full participation, independent
living, and economic self-sufficiency for individuals with disabilities."
20 U.S.C. § 1400 Congressional Findings
Individuals with Disabilities Education Act [IDEA]


Copyright © 2001  ASK 
All rights reserved.
Revised: January 25, 2002

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