All posts by Gary Mayerson

Upcoming Speaking Engagements at ASHA, NYASP and Autism New Jersey

On Friday, October 19, 2018, Jackie DeVore will be presenting at Autism New Jersey’s annual conference in Atlantic City with Cristiane Souza Bertone, M.S.Ed., BCBA .  Their presentation will focus on helping parents more effectively advocate for their children regarding Functional Behavior Assessments and Behavioral Intervention Plans.   For further information, log onto www.autismnj.org/education-training/annual-conference/.

On Saturday, October 20, 2018, Jean Marie Brescia will be presenting at the New York Association of School Psychologists’ annual conference in Lake Placid.  Jean Marie’s presentation concerns the complex ethics rules that govern the conduct of school psychologists and how school psychologists can act proactively to help identify and prevent the in-school sexual abuse of students with disabilities.  For further information, log onto www.nyasp.org.

On Saturday, November 17, 2018, Maria McGinley and Jackie DeVore will be presenting at the American Speech-Language Hearing Association’s annual national conference in Boston. Their presentation will identify issues that may arise during the evaluation and IEP development process and how SLP’s can effectively address legal issues and standards when they are called to testify at a hearing. For further information, log onto www.asha.org.

JobPath’s 40th Anniversary Gala Cocktail Reception

The transition to adulthood is perhaps one of the greatest challenges facing individuals with autism. JobPath was founded as a not-for-profit 40 years ago to help people with autism and other developmental disabilities join the workforce, live independently, and lead full and fulfilling lives.  JobPath partners with more than fifty New York City employers including law firms, retailers, restaurants, museums, media outlets and banks, to create and sustain customized employment opportunities.  Gary Mayerson sits on JobPath’s board. One of Mayerson & Associates’ assistant paralegals, now in his sixth year, came to the firm through JobPath.

On October 22, 2018, between 6-8 p.m., JobPath will be celebrating 40 years of  service to the community at an awards gala to be held in the Carnegie Room at Thomas Reuters, 3 Times Square.  Honorees include longtime JobPath supporters Tina Brown and Sir Harold Evans, and restauranteur Danny Meyer, whose company has hired dozens of JobPath clients.

Click the link below for the e-vite and further information.  We hope that you can join us to support the start of JobPath’s next forty years!

http://www.jobpathnyc.org/reservations/

 

 

New York Law School Symposium Focuses On Supreme Court

On March 23, 2018, New York Law School held a symposium focusing primarily on two important cases decided by the Supreme Court; Frye (having to do with the exhaustion of administrative remedies requirement) and Endrew F. (defining the meaning of the IDEA statute’s entitlement to a “free appropriate public education). Gary Mayerson presented as a panelist during the segment entitled “From Rowley To Endrew F.”  Gary also introduced guest speaker Clifford Rowley, the father of Amy Rowley, the student at issue in the Supreme Court’s seminal 1982 Rowley decision.  Mr. Rowley’s presentation was delivered in American Sign Language, and it provided a fascinating account of his family’s life and history before and after the Rowley decision.  Amy Rowley, for example, went on to earn a Ph.D. and is now a college professor in California.

At the conclusion of the Symposium, Gary Mayerson and colleagues Jean Marie Brescia, Maria McGinley, Jacqueline DeVore and Susan Wagner attended a reception in honor of NYLS Professor Richard Marsico, who coordinated the symposium and recently co-authored the law school textbook entitled “Special Education Law and Practice.”

Coincidentally, on March 23, 2018, the very same day as the NYLS Symposium, the Second Circuit rendered a decision answering one of the core questions discussed by the “From Rowley To Endrew F.” panel.  One of the important issues presented to the panel was whether or not the decision in Endrew F. represents a “sea change” in the Second Circuit, or whether that decision is reflective of existing Second Circuit precedent.  In Mr. P and Mrs. P., the Second Circuit Court of Appeals expressly held for the very first time that “Prior decisions of this Court are consistent with the Supreme Court’s decision in Endrew F.”

Gary Mayerson with Clifford Rowley

The Impact Of The Supreme Court’s Landmark 2017 Decision in Endrew F.

 In March of 2017, by a unanimous 8-0 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court mandated a far more robust, outcome-oriented FAPE standard. In Endrew F. v. Douglas County School District RE 1, 137 S.Ct. 988 (2017), the high court articulated a new FAPE standard, clarifying that a FAPE is required to be “markedly more demanding” than a “more than de minimus” standard and must be “reasonably calculated to enable a child to make progress appropriate in light of the child’s circumstances.” The Court further explained that every child is entitled to the chance to meet “challenging objectives” and that this should be accomplished by parents and school districts working together collaboratively to develop an IEP setting forth goals that are “appropriately ambitious.” A remand was ordered back to the district court so that the district court judge (who had ruled for the school district) could reconsider the record in light of the Supreme Court’s new FAPE standard.

On February 12, 2018, the district court judge (Judge Babcock) reversed himself and awarded the student full tuition reimbursement relief and transportation based on the Supreme Court’s new FAPE standard.  The district court judge explained that, applying the new FAPE standard, the IEP offered to the student by his school district “…was insufficient to create an educational plan that was reasonably calculated to enable [the student] to make progress, even in light of his unique circumstances, based on the continued pattern of unambitious goals and objectives of his prior IEP’s.”

The Supreme Court’s unanimous decision in Endrew F.  and the district court’s analysis on remand should help parents and school districts work together more collaboratively to design IEP’s that are “reasonably calculated” i.e. designed to promote greater levels of independence and self-sufficiency.  By way of a caveat, there still is, however, no entitlement to an IEP that is designed to achieve an optimal outcome.  As the high court explained in its 2017 decision, there is no entitlement to “…an education that aims to provide a child with a disability opportunities to achieve academic success, attain self-sufficiency, and contribute to society that are substantially equal to the opportunities afforded children without disabilities.”  No matter.  There is now much needed room for improvement between mere access to the “floor” of educational opportunity and the broader opportunities that a neurotypical child can expect.  Hopefully, the Supreme Court’s decision in Endrew F. will help to meaningfully reduce that gap in the years to come.