[nfbmi-talk] this mi idea case goes to blind students in parochial schools too

joe harcz Comcast joeharcz at comcast.net
Thu Dec 23 19:33:16 UTC 2010

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals has held that a school district could provide therapy to a student with a disability at her

parochial school

without violating the Establishment Clause. (Peck v. Lansing School District, 148 F. 3d 619 (6th Cir. 1998).)


The student, 12-year-old Elizabeth Peck, suffered from brittle bone disease. Her parents requested that the local school district provide Elizabeth with

physical and occupational therapy at the parochial school she attended.


She qualified for those services under the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA), which provides special education and related services to qualified

people with disabilities at public expense and supervision.


The school district refused to accommodate Elizabeth, arguing that doing so would violate the Establishment Clause separating church and state.


Elizabeth's father sued the school district on her behalf, alleging IDEA violations. The trial court found that providing therapy services at the parochial

school would not be an excessive entanglement between government and religion.


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