Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Finding a Special Education Advocate


Is there a certification, licensure, or Code of Professional Responsibility or Ethics Code for special education advocates?


No. There is currently no system in place to certify or otherwise regulate special education advocates. Parents must carefully choose a special education advocate because there are no standards or regulations.

Special Education Consulting and Pat Howey have developed a draft Model Code for special education advocates and is soliciting comments on this draft.

This draft adopts heavily from the Model Rules developed by the National Federation of Paralegal Associations. Please review the comments accompanying the Model Code and submit your comments and suggestions to:

The Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates (COPAA, is also looking into developing a Model Code or Model Rules.

Several groups are looking at regulating or certifiying special education advocates. The Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates COPAA,, in cooperation with the University of Southern California, hosts a Special Education Advocate Training (SEAT) program. This is not a licensure or certification program.

Until there are rules and some type of certification for special education advocates, the motto of parents should be, "Let the buyer beware."

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