Seminar Detail

Special Education Law in Massachusetts

Thursday, March 1, 2018 at 8:00 AM - 3:45 PM

This event is not currently available for purchase.

For more information: Call (800) 844-8260
Seminar Description:

One of the greatest challenges that you face today is ensuring compliance and implementation of the IDEA. With the many recent changes in both federal and state special education regulations, it is essential that you not only have an awareness of the changes taking place, but to also have an understanding of how these changes impact day-to-day activities of the students you serve. A cursory knowledge of the law or applying common sense do not begin to protect school districts and you against the potential legal and financial consequences of misinterpreting special education regulations. Attend this seminar for the latest information on developments in the reauthorized IDEA and gain practical advice on how to effectively implement IDEA requirements in order to ensure compliance with the regulations while meeting the needs of students with disabilities.

  1. Determine the specific requirements for identifying students with special needs under the “Child Find” obligation of the “Individuals with Disabilities Education Act”.
  2. Describe the purpose and required elements of the special education evaluation and reevaluation process in order to place students in the appropriate education setting.
  3. Compose specific and measurable IEP goals and objectives consistent with the student needs resulting from the disability.
  4. Communicate the purpose and scope of the 10 Day Rule as it pertains to disciplinary action for students with disabilities.
  5. Outline the due process procedure as stated in Massachusetts state law.
  6. Discuss how to avoid risk of litigation with respect to common mistakes made by special education professionals.

Special Education Law – Keeping Up to Date

Evaluations, Eligibility Determinations and Placement
  • Child Find, Including Private School Children
  • Duty to Evaluate, Procedural Timelines
Parental Consent – Evaluations, Programming and Placement
  • Eligibility Determinations
  • Placement Considerations
  • Graduation and Aging Out – Summary of Performance
TEAM Meetings and IEPs
  • TEAM Composition
  • Parent Non-attendance – Alternative Methods of Participation
  • Strategies for Keeping TEAM Meetings on Track
  • TEAM Decision Making
  • Move-In Students, School Choice Students
IEP Content Issues
  • Present Levels of Performance
  • Parent and Student Concerns
  • Vision Statement
  • Accommodations and Modifications
  • Goals and Objectives
  • Specific Learning Disabilities
  • Autism Considerations
  • Service Delivery Grids and Additional Information
  • Amendments
  • Service Plans for Private School Students
Student Discipline
  • Quick Review of Student Discipline for Regular Education Students
  • 10 Day Rule
  • Manifestation Determination Meetings
  • FBA’s and BIPs
  • 45 Day Placements
  • Students Not Yet Eligible
  • ”Stay Put” Provisions
Key Topics
  • Independent Educational Evaluations
  • Service Animals
  • Transition Planning (The “Dracut Case”)
  • Bullying Prevention Plans
  • Parent Advisory Councils
  • Transgender students
  • Obligations of private schools to serve disabled students
  • Recent legal decisions in MA
  • Use of robots for students who are unable to attend school


Mary L. Gallant, is an experienced attorney with a primary focus on special education, education and juvenile law. Ms. Gallant regularly advises public schools; assisting them with compliance on special education laws and regulations and interactions with staff of the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, Department of Children and Families, Department of Mental Health and Department of Developmental Disabilities. In her time with Sakakeeney & Associates, she represented clients in litigation before administrative agencies, including the Bureau of Special Education Appeals, as well as state and federal trial and appellate courts. In addition, she frequently conducts workshops for teachers, principals and school administrators on a variety of special education and education topics. Ms. Gallant is an honors graduate of Boston University School of Law. She is an honors graduate of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, holding dual bachelor’s degrees in Zoology and Psychology. Mary is a licensed social worker in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and is a member of the Massachusetts Bar Association.

Speaker Disclosures:

Speaker Disclosures: Financial: Mary Gallant receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc.

Non-financial: Mary Gallant is a member of the Massachusetts Bar Association.
Credits listed below are for full attendance at the live event only. After attendance has been verified, pre-registered attendees will receive an email from PESI Customer Service with the subject line, “Evaluation and Certificate” within one week. This email will contain a link to complete the seminar evaluation and allow attendees to print, email or download a certificate of completion if in full attendance. For those in partial attendance (arrived late or left early), a letter of attendance is available through that link and an adjusted certificate of completion reflecting partial credit will be issued within 30 days (if your board allows). Please see “live seminar schedule” for full attendance start and end times. NOTE: Boards do not allow credit for breaks or lunch.

If your profession is not listed, please contact your licensing board to determine your continuing education requirements and check for reciprocal approval. For other credit inquiries not specified below, or questions on home study credit availability, please contact or 800-844-8260 before the event.

Materials that are included in this course may include interventions and modalities that are beyond the authorized practice of mental health professionals. As a licensed professional, you are responsible for reviewing the scope of practice, including activities that are defined in law as beyond the boundaries of practice in accordance with and in compliance with your professions standards.

The planning committee and staff who controlled the content of this activity have no relevant financial relationships to disclose. For speaker disclosures, please see speaker bios.

PESI, Inc. offers continuing education programs and products under the brand names PESI, PESI Healthcare, PESI Rehab and Psychotherapy Networker.

This intermediate activity consists of 6.0 clock hours of continuing education instruction. Credit requirements and approvals vary per state board regulations. Please save the course outline, the certificate of completion you receive from the activity and contact your state board or organization to determine specific filing requirements.

Massachusetts Counselors: CE credit is available. This program has been approved for 6.0 Category I MaMHCA/MMCEP hours for re-licensure, in accordance with 262 CMR. Expires: 2/28/2019. Full attendance is required; no partial credits will be offered for partial attendance.

This course is designed to qualify toward your professional development requirement. The program is 6.0 clock hours in length.

Massachusetts School Personnel: This course may be applicable for 6.0 Professional Development Points toward your Professional Development Plan per the Massachusetts Department of Education recertification guidelines; check with your licensing authority for more information.

Social Workers
PESI, Inc., #1062, is approved to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Organizations, not individual courses, are approved as ACE providers. State and provincial regulatory boards have the final authority to determine whether an individual course may be accepted for continuing education credit. PESI, Inc. maintains responsibility for this course. ACE provider approval period: January 27, 2017 - January 27, 2020. Social Workers completing this course receive 6.0 Clinical Practice continuing education credits. Course Level: Intermediate. Full attendance is required; no partial credits will be offered for partial attendance. A certificate of attendance will be awarded at the end of the program to social workers who complete the program evaluation.

Other Professions
This activity qualifies for 365 minutes of instructional content as required by many national, state and local licensing boards and professional organizations. Save your course outline and certificate of completion, and contact your own board or organization for specific requirements.

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