As this blog has discussed on previous occasions, students who qualify for special education have important rights that their local school district must respect. These rights are in place in order to ensure that, despite having special needs, these Mobile, Alabama, students can still have the opportunity for a quality education.

For a variety of reasons, special education students may also find themselves on the receiving end of significant school discipline, including a long-term suspension or even an expulsion from the school. In some cases, an indefinite suspension or expulsion is even mandatory under Alabama’s laws.

Incidentally, in some cases, the school must also automatically refer the student to law enforcement for possible criminal charges.

On the other hand, students do have certain rights before being expelled from school. This is particularly so when the special education laws apply. Oftentimes, for instance, the very reason that a student is being punished is because of a condition identified in his or her IEP, and the whole point of an IEP is for the school board to help the student address the underlying condition.

Getting expelled from school or suspended in a significant manner can have a bigger impact on a student’s future than one might think. In addition to having to make up for missed educational time, such consequences often become matters of public record and may even be in play when a student goes to apply for a job, enter the military or the like.

When a special education student is facing discipline, it is important for parents to understand their legal rights. Getting the help of an education law attorney may be an important step in this respect.