Cassady Mineiro helps families in Tacoma

We filed an OSPI complaint on behalf of 11 students in Tacoma Public Schools, representing the interests of thousands of students throughout the district with no voice. TPS laid off or reduced hours of hundreds of paras without notifying parents; cut services outside of the IEP process; and many parents are kept in the dark about when special education services will begin.

Click here to read coverage of these issues in the Tacoma News Tribune.

If you would like to read the full OSPI Complaint, download the PDF below:


OSPI complaints for students not receiving IEP services during COVID-19

We are passing this information along in the public interest, to inform our state about problems families are experiencing.

Disability and youth rights organizations are mobilizing parents to fill out and file citizen’s complaints with OSPI and their school districts.  If you know of students who have not been receiving special education and related services during the school closure, or who cannot access the education offered during the closure, please feel free to share the template below for an OSPI citizen complaint.  The template requests compensatory education for individual students as well as districtwide plans to ensure that all students will receive appropriate services next school year.

The template below is intended to be easy for parents to fill out with their student-specific details, without the need to hire an attorney. OSPI’s website provides more information  about how to file an OSPI citizen’s complaint on your own here.

Disability and youth rights organizations have asked that citizen’s complaints be filed on the same day: June 12th.  But if you cannot file by this date, and you want to file a citizen’s complaint to remedy loss of educational services during the COVID-19 closures, you should file one when you can.

Again, OSPI does not require that Parents use an attorney to file a citizen’s complaint.  Cassady Mineiro, PLLC is providing this information as a service to the community and is not providing legal advice. Use of this information does not establish an attorney-client relationship with Cassady Mineiro, PLLC.


Ninth Circuit Win

Charlotte Cassady and Nicholle Mineiro won an important victory for the rights of youth to receive FAPE in residential treatment centers. Edmonds School District v. A.T. solidified the right to receive related services in mental health under IDEA. Read the decision here. Watch the oral argument here.

Diana Lafornara earns COPAA Advanced Advocate Training Certificate

Cassady Law paralegal and education advocate Diana Lafornara has earned an Advanced Advocate Training Certificate from the Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates (COPAA). This certificate is only open to experienced advocates. This is the first year this certificate has been offered by COPAA and is the highest-level certification offered by COPAA for non-attorney advocates. Diana earned this certificate while attending the 2018 COPAA national conference in Monterey, California. Also in attendance at the conference were Cassady Law attorneys Nicholle Mineiro and Christine Porter.


Cassady Law Welcomes C. Christine Porter

Cassady Law PLLC is proud to announce the addition of C. Christine Porter, Attorney at Law, to the firm. Christine brings a wide variety of experience to the firm including experience in employment law and a long history of volunteering in the disability and special education advocacy community.

Christine earned her law degree from the University of Washington Law School. She also holds a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy from Hunter College and a Master of Arts in Philosophy from the University of Washington.

For Christine’s bio, click here.

C. Christine Porter, Attorney

C. Christine Porter, Attorney at Law


Victory: Federal Court Decision on Residential Placement

Cassady Law received a favorable ruling from the Western District of Washington on a residential placement case on November 7, 2017. This ruling will affect many students with profound mental health needs and other disabilities who need to be placed in residential treatment schools in order to receive a free appropriate public education in a therapeutic setting. Our firm prevailed in a due process hearing for our clients, and the school district appealed in federal court seeking to overturn the decision. Judge Lasnik wrote, “Having failed to provide an appropriate public education from which [the Student] could derive any educational benefit, the district is financially responsible for the appropriate residential placement the parents were forced to find on their own.”  Edmonds School District v. A.T., Western District of Washington C16-1500 RSL (November 7, 2017).