Rules for when you can suspend or expel a special-needs student from the bus are complex. Though we must adhere to Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and other federal guidelines, where do we go from there?
Whatever your state regulations, one of the first steps you will want to take before suspending a special-needs student from the school bus is to determine if his behavior is related to his disability. Here are some questions you should ask in making that determination:
• Did the student’s disability prevent him from understanding the impact and consequences of his behavior?
• Is the student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP) appropriate?
• Is the student’s current placement appropriate?
• Did the IEP committee consider evaluation and diagnostic results?
• Is this a recurring behavior?
• To what extent has the IEP been implemented?
• In what context did the behavior occur? Was it impulsive or premeditated?
• What behavior management techniques have been used?