According to facts outlined in the OCR's letter of finding, as reported in the Daily News, the retaliation against the family resulted from a district official contacting the San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office and claiming the child’s father secretly and illegally taped an IEP meeting with district educators.
A sheriff's deputy went to the family’s home, but found no proof of a crime being committed.
The school district’s attorney had allegedly advised school staff that under state law, it’s illegal to record conversations without the consent of all participants. But state law does not apply to IEP meetings, the OCR's letter said.
The OCR found the call to law enforcement to be caused by the parents' advocacy actions on behalf of their child, and therefore was a form of retaliation prohibited by law due to its "deterrent and chilling effect on parents and their willingness to actively participate in their own children's education and advocate on their behalf." There was no harm sufficient to warrant such involvement by law enforcement.
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