PATERSON, NJ - Members of the Paterson Child Study Teams have alerted the superintendent of the Paterson school district that they have been pressured by supervisors to violate the Special Education Code.

In a group letter signed by the Paterson Child Study Teams, concerns were raised that supervisors are requiring the teams to “get approval” on drafted Individualized Education Programs (IEP) without parental input, and to change the wording on certain IEPs.

“In some cases, Child Study Teams are being pressured to write encouraging IEPs so that students can get into certain schools, and, in other cases, teams are being asked to write discouraging IEPs so that students can get into certain schools and, in other cases, teams are being asked to write discouraging IEPs so students can be transferred out of a particular school,” the letter says.

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The letter has asked State District Superintendent Donnie W. Evans, Ed.D., to investigate the matter, which charges illegal practices by some supervisors and building administrators.

The letter goes on to state that IEP meetings should include the case manager, a child’s parent, the required teachers, and the student “when appropriate.” “Supervisors should not be directing Child Study Teams to alter IEPs before a parent has a chance to review it nor should they request changes to the IEP after the parent sign (sic) it.”

The Alternative Press has reached out to representatives of the Paterson Public Schools. Spokesperson Terry Corallo of the district stated that they are “looking into the matter.”