When Los Angeles mother Tania Rivera signed a crucial document for her son Luis’ special education program in 2022, she was hoping he would be able to return to in-person classes after two years of distance learning.
But the individualized education program, or IEP, required for all children who need special education, was available only in English. Rivera’s first language is Spanish.
Later she was told Luis, who has autism, would have to continue with online learning because the document did not specify that he needed in-person classes. In addition, she says, the document removed his occupational therapy for handwriting because a language interpreter erroneously said she objected.