Trouble continues as forensic audit climbs $20,000 over budget

Darien Schools’ special education record-keeping has been strewn with errors and inaccuracies for years, leading to additional auditing costs to sort through the mess as the district continues to determine and implement best accounting practices.
Continue reading


Lawyer urges state intervention into special ed

A new twist to the ever-complicated special education saga has come to light after some parents claimed that no substantive action has taken place to fix the variety of problems in Darien.
Continue reading

Feds use survey with high error ratio to determine aid eligibility


Billions of dollars are flowing to public school districts across the country through a federal grant program designed to improve poor schools, yet the methods used to determine eligibility include data that have high margins of error, which appears to have enabled wealthy districts to receive some of this money. Continue reading

Reading expert discusses dylexia; says English is part of problem

“English is a great language, but it’s part of the problem.”

Words of wisdom from Margie Gillis, project director at the Haskins Literacy Initiative at Yale University, delivered earlier this month to a room of parents and educators at Royle School. Gillis’s visit was sponsored by the Special Education Parent Advisory Committee, and she spoke for roughly two hours about dyslexia being both a blessing and a curse.
Continue reading

Area responds to restraint data; kids with disabilities need better support

Questions and concerns emerged soon after it was reported that a single student was restrained or secluded 858 times in one school year. The number of incidents to this student — who has parents in Darien but attends a residential school outside of town — represented 96% of the total number of restraints and seclusions reported by Darien Schools during the 2012-13 school year.
Continue reading

No raise for admins; arbitrators find school board equally culpable for special ed

School administrators will not be given raises this year, saving the district $68,000 after an arbitration panel decision. However, the panel found that responsibility for last year’s special education debacle should be shared among all those involved, including the Board of Education.
Continue reading

Student held down, locked away, 858 times in a year

Many people will live their entire lives without being restrained from moving their bodies, and never being held in a confined space, unable to leave, for a long period of time. But one child of a Darien family experienced these incidents 858 times at the hands of an out-of-district school, according to information provided by district administration.
Continue reading