Student & Children’s Rights

The mission and tradition of the Children’s Rights Unit of Community Legal Services of Mid-Florida (CLSMF) is to provide equal access and opportunity to all children in the State of Florida, especially those discriminated against due to their disabilities, race, nationality, gender or LGBTQ status. To fulfill our mission, CLSMF provides legal information, resources, and representation to parents in actions against school districts.

Under federal and state law, every child aged 3 to 22 with a disability has the right to a free and appropriate public education. Sometimes parents and schools disagree about what is appropriate for a child. This can result in a conflict that can affect the education of a child.
Special Education law requires that parents be heard in making educational decisions. Under special education law, school districts are responsible for identifying children with disabilities, conducting evaluations, providing specialized support and services, and providing accommodations that allow a child to succeed in school. When a school district does not provide these services, students are more likely to be suspended, expelled, or arrested and they are more likely to drop out of school before graduation.
CLSMF attorneys can represent parents with children who have difficulties in school, home, and the community, including those with disabilities who have been denied an appropriate education.
If you think that your child has been denied the education they deserve, contact our Children’s Rights Unit at (386) 361-5254.

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