Subj:    THE SPECIAL ED ADVOCATE, AUGUST 20, 1999 (V. 2, NO 19)
Date:    8/20/99 1:55:47 PM Pacific Daylight Time
From: (Pam & Pete Wright)

The Special Ed Advocate

The Online Newsletter About

Special Education and the Law

August 20, 1999 Vol. II, No. 19

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The Special Ed Advocate is a free online newsletter about special education legal issues, cases, tactics and strategy, effective educational methods, and Internet links.

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On Monday, August 16, Arkansas parent Tom Bradley sent word about the new Mauney case out of the Eighth Circuit. His email said: “On 8-10-99, Eighth Circuit Court denied Arkansas' claim of Eleventh
Amendment immunity in several IDEA cases. Check case #98-1721.”

“Tom Gilhool of the Public Interest Law Center of Philadelphia and Seth Galanter filed briefs in support of IDEA.”

We went on the Internet, found the 8th Circuit Mauney case, and downloaded it. We knew that the Eighth Circuit had issued a negative decision in Alsbrook, an ADA case, a few weeks ago. We discussed the Alsbrook decision in the August 4 1999 newsletter.

We asked Tom about his case. He wrote: “Our case has been stymied since 9/24/99. The state of Arkansas tried to
slip a weaker case in ahead of us so we would be bound by their decision. We found out what they were doing and Tom Gilhool and the Justice Dept. helped out. (Check case 98-1010.)”

“The Arkansas attorney general is waging all-out war on the disabled. Last month they got a decision granting Eleventh Amendment immunity in an ADA case, Alsbrook v. Arkansas. We appreciate your help in getting
the news out about this.”

Minnesota parent attorney SONJA KERR explained why this new 8th Circuit is so important:

“The Mauney 8th circuit decision is critical to continued FAPE for kids in the Eighth Circuit. That the 8th circuit denied the rehearing to examine the issue of immunity for the state educational agencies is good news.”

“It reinforces that while the 8th circuit will be conservative on the issue of discrimination claims which may lead to monetary damages (i.e. ADA, 504), the 8th Circuit will continue to enforce IDEA.”

“Many of us who practice in the 8th breathed a sigh of relief!"


The Wrightslaw Law Library-

New Eighth Circuit decision in Mauney case (in pdf format):

Eighth Circuit decision in “Alsbrook v. Arkansas”:

Sonja Kerr’s web site:

The Eighth Circuit includes these states:

* Minnesota *
* Iowa *
* Missouri *
* Arkansas *
* North Dakota *
* South Dakota *
* Nebraska *



Our goal in writing WRIGHTSLAW: SPECIAL EDUCATION LAW is to provide parents, educators, advocates and attorneys with accurate, reasonably priced information about special education law and advocacy techniques.
This week, we received several requests from advocates like Diane. Diane will teach an advocacy class this fall:

“Congratulations on the success of your book! I have been eagerly expecting it, and can hardly wait to have it in my hands.”

“You made such an impact on my life when I heard you at the first COPAA conference in Orlando. I have been amazed at your willingness to share your knowledge and train parents to be effective advocates.”

“I have been taking a course called Partners in Policymaking. This involves a weekend training session each month. We learn effective advocacy skills and are required to put together a project that will have a positive impact in our community/district.”

“I designed a parent training program to train parents in effective advocacy tactics. I am partnering with our local autism society group and our local Resource Center, which serves educators and parents.”

“I thought how wonderful it would be for each of the participants to have as a textbook/resource your new book. But I missed the deadline for 1/2 price books for bulk purchases. Is this etched in stone?”

“I received a gift to pay for something like this. I would like to have your book to give and use, but I cannot purchase so many of them at full price.”

“If this is possible, I will be one ecstatic person. If not, I fully understand.”

We want Diane’s student advocates to have WRIGHTSLAW: SPECIAL EDUCATION LAW!

Together with Harbor House Law Press, we designed the ADVOCACY CHALLENGE program. Here’s how it works:

If you teach an advocacy class, you can get 20 BOOKS for the price of 10 books + shipping. Minimum order is 20 books. Participants in the ADVOCACY CHALLENGE will pay the parcel post or priority mail costs.

If you want to participate in the ADVOCACY CHALLENGE, send an email to

or fax the Order Form at

Together, we can make a difference!



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Pete and Pam Wright
c/o The Special Ed Advocate
P. O. Box 1008
Deltaville, VA 23043
Phone: 804-257-0857

Website: Email:

The resources at this website are copyrighted by the authors. They may be used for non-commercial purposes only. They may not be redistributed for commercial purposes without the express written consent of Peter W.
D. Wright.

It is not necessary to obtain our consent to link to our website or copy, print and distribute our articles and newsletters for nonprofit purposes so long as the material is reproduced in its entirety and credit is given to Pete and Pam Wright and "wrightslaw" including the URL -

Copyright 1999, Peter W. D. Wright and Pamela Darr Wright. All rights reserved.