Gingras, Thomsen and Wachs Partner Paul Kinne has filed a Title II lawsuit against the Cuba City School District (CCSD) for violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act and Rehabilitation Act. Our client is specifically seeking justice for discrimination, abuse and deprivation of educational opportunities that occurred during the 2018-19 school year.
Our client suffers from autism, and as a student at Cuba City Elementary School, she endured repeated abuse and isolation at the hands of her special education teacher.
Over the course of the school year, our client was unlawfully secluded in a concrete block-walled classroom as a form of punishment, forcefully grabbed and dragged down the hallway by her arm and treated in a way that would intentionally provoke outbursts.
On at least one occasion, the special education teacher stated, “If we calm or discipline her, then we cannot suspend her.”
This deliberate treatment was used to create a disciplinary record that would support a decision from the CCSD to place our client in a different school, outside of the district. In March of 2019, district officials informed our client’s mother that she would be moved to a different school, New Frontier School.
New Frontier School lacked any expertise in dealing with students who suffered from autism, so our client’s mother requested that the CCSD offer her the chance to attend Common Threads, which has an expertise in working with autistic students. Cuba City School District rejected this request, sending her to New Frontier for the remainder of the 2018-2019 school year.
The continued mistreatment and discrimination caused our client mental anguish and suffering, even deteriorating her behavior at home. It also negatively impacted her learning and academic achievement.
“Our client’s family hopes that through this legal action, she can achieve justice for herself and for others in a position similar to hers,” said Paul Kinne.