MCDD's (MD UCEDD) Associate Director Joins a National Advisory Committee for COPAA

January 11, 2018

In October 2017, Maureen van Stone, the associate director of the Maryland Center for Developmental Disabilities at Kennedy Krieger Institute was selected to be on a national advisory committee for the Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, Inc. (COPAA). COPAA was awarded a grant from the National Council on Disability (NCD) to write a Report on Charter Schools, Choice, & Vouchers - Implications for Students with Disabilities. COPAA has partnered with Center for Law and Education (CLE) to do the research, focus groups and drafting. COPAA invited a cross section of stakeholders, including Ms. van Stone, to participate on the national advisory panel.

The advisory panel is integral to the planning, development, and execution of this project. Panel members will help organize and participate in focus groups, review selected data collected from those focus groups and interviews, and participate in meetings and periodic conference calls to discuss the report's development. The purpose of this research is to examine and analyze issues associated with the participation of students with disabilities in charter schools and voucher programs. The information obtained will be used to draft a report on Charter Schools, Choice and Vouchers - Implications for Students with Disabilities, and to provide recommendations based on the findings.

The overarching framework includes consideration of the following six areas: (1) What legal requirements in IDEA 2004, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and other relevant statutes pertain to charter schools and voucher programs? (2) What regulations or guidance exist? (3) What issues of concern (if applicable) were raised in NCD previous reports that have yet to be resolved? (4) What does the literature currently say about charter schools and voucher programs? (5) What descriptive data are available at the national level? (6) How do stakeholders--students, parents, teachers, district/state leadership, and/or Administration officials--perceive the issues? For questions about the research, please contact: Selene Almazan, Esq. NCD Project Lead Investigator COPAA selene@copaa.org