The state Department of Public Instruction is ordering the Wake County school system to develop a new alternative program after determining that was put in place to replace the Richard Milburn High School isn't enough.
Wake had dropped Richard Milburn last year for budgetary reasons, replacing it with an online program to serve long-term suspended students. But in a DPI investigation of Wake's special-ed services, the state found that the new program wasn't adequate for meeting the needs of students with disabilities.
In the absence of Richard Milburn, the report noted that around 200 long-term students were receiving instruction at home on weekends and after-school. But the report found that the Wake was providing these students with less than six hours of weekly instruction.
The report also found that many of the long-term suspended students receiving homebound instruction had not been promoted several times and had been suspended several times without getting proper special education services.
The investigation began after a complaint was filed by Advocates for Children’s Services, a non-profit group which has represented a number of students who’ve received long-term suspensions.
"The WCPSS should be ashamed," according to an ACS press release today, "It has deliberately deprived some of our most vulnerable children of the education they so desperately need and to which they have a right under state and federal law. This should be a wake up call for Wake County: You cannot ignore the law and treat vulnerable children and families unfairly!"