Strengthen Your School's IEP and 504 Plan Process and Protect Student Rights
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IEPs and 504 plans are essential tools to ensure positive learning outcomes for many students. They also have the potential to cause legal issues for schools if they aren't properly planned and carried out. Get a comprehensive overview of legal liabilities in IEPs and 504 plans from our experienced faculty. Take away valuable information you can use to spot potential issues in your school's IEP and 504 plan process. Order today!
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STEPHON J. BOWENS is the managing attorney of Bowens & Averhart, PLLC, where his primary focus is education law related matters. The firm represents students with special needs who have been denied a Free Appropriate Public Education, as well as students adversely affected by improper disciplinary proceedings within traditional public schools. The firm also represents several public charter schools in North Carolina. Mr. Bowens is licensed to practice in all state and federal courts of North Carolina and federal courts of Washington, D.C. He has appeared and argued before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit and the District of Columbia Circuit Court of Appeals, as well as the North Carolina Court of Appeals. He is a current member of the Education Law Section of the North Carolina Bar Association. Mr. Bowens was an editor and contributor to A Parent's Guide to Public School Discipline, a handbook for parents regarding their right to participate in the education and disciplinary proceedings of their children in the public schools; and the Good North Carolina School, a guide that discloses qualities of good elementary schools. Mr. Bowens earned his B.A. degree from North Carolina State University and his J.D. degree from North Carolina Central University School of Law. He was also an Education Policy fellow with the Institute for Educational Leadership.
ROBERT C. EKSTRAND co-founded Ekstrand & Ekstrand LLP, in 2002. Mr. Ekstrand's practice includes education law focusing on special education and disciplinary proceedings representing children, through their parents or guardians, in special education cases and the rights of disabled children in schools through enforcement of the Individuals with Disabilities in Education Act, the Rehabilitation Act, and the Americans with Disabilities Act. This includes the development, implementation, and modification of IEPs and behavior plans. Mr. Ekstrand also represents students involved in school disciplinary proceedings. This includes preventing or challenging punishments such as suspensions and expulsions, filing appeals, and preserving a student’s educational record. The firm has represented students of all ages and backgrounds from preschool through graduate school. Mr. Ekstrand previously taught criminal and criminal procedures at Duke Law School. He is admitted to practice in North Carolina and Texas. Mr. Ekstrand received his B.A. degree, summa cum laude, from the University of Maryland; and his J.D. degree from Duke Law School.
ANN M. PARADIS is a partner at Gahagan Paradis, PLLC, a private law firm in Durham, North Carolina and practices education law throughout the state. Gahagan Paradis, PLLC, is the largest parent and student friendly private law firm in North Carolina. Ms. Paradis has experience providing community services to adults with disabilities including adults with significant physical, behavioral, communication needs. She has practiced education, disability, family, criminal, and consumer law. A graduate of Western New England School of Law in Massachusetts, her home state, she is admitted to the state and federal district courts of North Carolina. Ms. Paradis has worked for legal service and legal aid organizations in Massachusetts and North Carolina, and in private practice in Johnston, Wake and Durham counties. Ms. Paradis is a member the North Carolina Bar Association and the Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates.
CHESSELEY A. ROBINSON III is the sole practitioner with Chesseley A. Robinson, III, based in Raleigh, North Carolina. Mr. Robinson is a barred attorney in the District of Columbia and practices educational law. He has conducted in excess of 100 due-process hearings under IDEA 1997/IDEIA 2004 in the District of Columbia. Mr. Robinson is a former hearing officer for Guilford County Public Schools for the Employment Security Commission of North Carolina. He is a past adjunct instructor of Criminal Law and Procedure and Legal Ethics at both Southeastern University and Bowie State University. Prior to attending law school, he was a teacher and student mentor part time at Bonner Academy, a program for troubled and/or disadvantaged teens. Mr. Robinson earned his B.A. degree from North Carolina State University and his J.D. degree, cum laude, from the University of the District of Columbia-David A. Clarke School of Law. He is admitted to practice before the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. Mr. Robinson has an emerging practice before the United States Supreme Court.