We understand that you might be new to the world of special education, or simply more interested in understanding some of the specific details of what due process is and how a complaint is drafted.

ABA, Applied Behavior Analysis, is a popular program designed to improve the overall development of individuals on the autism spectrum.

If you are new to the world of ABA, then my chat with Melissa Willa of Gateway Learning Group is for you. We start with the basics of what ABA is, what it looks like from a parent and therapist point of view and how it is evolving over time.

Dr. Dana Chidekel started her career as a psychoanalytic psychotherapist. She subsequently completed training in neuropsychology. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Pediatric Neuropsychology and the American College of Professional Neuropsychology. She is certified by the American Board of Professional Neuropsychology and by the American Board of Pediatric Neuropsychology, for which she also serves as an examiner.


An interesting article dropped in the April 08, 2019 edition of the Los Angeles Times regarding a frustrated middle school parent who felt her son was being overwhelmingly bullied in class.

The parents claim the student was bullied for multiple years, isolated in the classroom, physically and verbally harassed and more. In addition, they claim the student was seen as rude and lazy and thus not well protected by his teachers.

These types of cases are heart-wrenching for me to read. As the parent to a child with autism (well, now adult), I always worried about bullying for him. As a teacher myself, I try to always spot those kids that are vulnerable to bullying. Frankly, those particular students can be difficult as they may not have the social skills to the same level as their peers. This, of course, is one of the reasons for the bullying.  Students with less social skills are often targets. Teachers need to be their ally.

What do you think? Do you have a story to share about bullying in your family situation? Feel free to share it in the comments.



For many years we have worked with Dr. Christine Davidson for her IEE reports and other services she provides families.

In the past few years, Dr. Davidson has expanded her reach and now runs the Davidson Learning Center.

The center provides an individualized personal education for students who benefit from a non-traditional setting. She also runs a summer institute and we wanted to get the word out to families about the summer institute as a way to introduce the overall Davidson Learning Center.

For more information, check out her summer flyer.



In February of 2019, Richard met with families from the Riverside Community Advisory Committee to discuss their concerns.

His presentation covered appropriate placements for students with additional learning needs.   Feel free to download his presentation.

Interested in having someone form CSNLG present at your organization or group, drop us a note. info@csnlg.com



Richard recently presented at a conference in Orange County titled regarding 504’s and IDEA.

Here is a copy of his presentation Determining Eligibility for Sect 504 and IDEA



Richard recently presented at a conference in Orange County titled Developing and Implementing IEP’s.

Here is a copy of his presentation Developing and Implementing IEPs



At some point during your effort (sometimes fight) to receive special education services for your child, you may want to request an Independent Educational Evaluation, commonly referred to as an IEE. Parents and others often request an IEE if they disagree with the district’s evaluation.

To help make that request a little easier, please feel free to use this template to guide you. While there is no guarantee the district will agree to an IEE, knowing what a request should look like can be very helpful.



By Linaja Murray, CSNLG Attorney


When a student’s educational program is not appropriate, family members may privately fund after-school services to assist the student and seek reimbursement. Common examples of this include after-school tutoring or remediation in the area of reading, writing, and math. Families may also privately fund additional after-school services such as occupational therapy, speech and language therapy, vision therapy, behavioral therapy, and counseling.

In some cases, families may fund an entire educational program at a private school and seek reimbursement.

Getting Reimbursed

Whenever a family is privately funding an educational program or service, keeping clear payment records is absolutely essential to seeking reimbursement. Frequently, reimbursement for privately funded services is accomplished in a settlement agreement following the filing of a due process complaint, which may require the assistance of an attorney.


If you are privately funding an educational program or after-school therapies/services, you should adhere to the following guidelines:

  1. Request and keep all invoices from service providers Store these invoices in a separate folder on your computer that is easily accessible prior to and during mediation.
  2. Make all payments using a trackable method. The preferred method for privately funding services is payment by personal check. A secondary method that allows for reimbursement is debit and credit card transactions showing that a payment was made. Copies of canceled checks or bank statements will be required for proof of payment. Payment in cash complicates settlement negotiations and should be avoided whenever possible.
  3. Keep clear records. An excel sheet (like the one linked here) showing the invoice number, cost of service, and payment method will be very helpful in settlement negotiations.


Here is a spreadsheet to help you keep track of those expenses.