Please feel free to post information on conferences, news and resources that you believe would be useful to share with other parents – including proposing group meetings if there is enough interest to try to resolve common problems.


Welcome to my blog site about Special Education and IEP’s for disabled students.  My name is Rick Hopper and I live in Northern Virginia.  I have a law degree from American University and previously served on the Loudoun County Disabilities Board.  More importantly, I am a parent of a disabled daughter who has brittle bones.  As a result of 18 years of dealing with the school system in the development of plans for her studies, IEP’s, and taking actions to contest or enforce IEP’s, I feel that I have developed experience that I should share with other disabled students and their parents if they are looking for a general special education consultant/strategist (non-lawyer relationship).  I can be contacted at   I know that attorneys and litigation can be expensive, so what I offer are ideas on how to resolve problems without the need for litigation, how to find resources to help, serving as a witness at meetings, and advice how to lay the proper foundation and identify what needs to be documented should you unforunately have to resort to litigation.  These are roles that attornies usually do not play since it would cost you too much to have an attorney involved in all your interactions with the school system, yet is perhaps the greatest need of parents and disabled students. I hope to hear from you and provide whatever help that I can.


~ by americanpresidents on January 13, 2009.

4 Responses to “Please feel free to post information on conferences, news and resources that you believe would be useful to share with other parents – including proposing group meetings if there is enough interest to try to resolve common problems.”

  1. Hi, this is a comment.
    To delete a comment, just log in, and view the posts’ comments, there you will have the option to edit or delete them.

  2. Mr Hopper.
    I think, for students with autism and autism related disorders, that there should be more focus on making sure autistic are less stressed and more motivated. To do this we need to ask more questions and figure out how we can help in a constructive manner that meets their needs. We need to listen more to what they want and that way a routine can be instilled that can be constructive. Autistic kids are great with routines. So teachers need to find routines for autistic children during their down time. One routine could be just every day just go for a walk with a Teacher’s Assistant and just walk and talk about each other’s day for an hour, while on school grounds- if at an elementary or high school- on the running track. That way they could let out some stress and be more happy and less stressed. I think this would work.

  3. Andrew – I agree with yourself – but I am not an expert on students with autism. Were your parents able to get such a provision for “clam” time in your IEP or, if not, what arguments did the school use to reject it. I would be interested in learing more – and of hearing from your aides and other support people at school. At this point, at least, I would like to offer whatever assistance I can provide free as a public service, so the more I can learn and be aware of – and the more that people learn that I am avaible to possibility help as a counselor or witness etc,m the better. Rick

  4. I’m not sure what clam time is. I’ve never heard of it. The only thing I think could have been handled better with me is when I was pulled into the office for the stupid comment I made that I told you about. The only aide I ever had a remote problem with is no longer there. Deborah hannah was her name but my problem with her was when she started downing Ms. Campbell and told me not to tell anyone. Did you mean calm time because I did get that but it was time that I used to go on walks with my aides Mrs. kripps, who is totally cool and of course the ultimate aide Mrs. Fish. My aides were those two and the one that I had for Monroe Votech was Mrs. Daly and she ROCKS too. I never really had an aide that I felt I couldn’t talk too but I did have several teachers I disliked but of course you already know my regards towards Mrs. Jens.

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