District holds first meeting after special education audit

DAVENPORT, Iowa (KWQC) After an audit conducted by the Iowa Department of Education found the Davenport school district's special education services were out of compliance with federal law. The school district held its first public meeting since the citation and parents came ready to voice their concerns.

“They tell us that they want to hear from us, but they don't listen when they ask,” said Lori Janke, a parent.

Students with disabilities are typically granted what's called an individualized education plan or IEP. Research shows those plans were also out of compliance. The district is now looking to improve its resources for children with disabilities. Parents say they are glad these issues are coming to light.

“I didn't know how extensive the problem was, but I wasn't surprised at all. I was really glad to see the audit team come in,” said Kari Dugan, a parent.

Dugan says her daughter was in the special education program for 2 years, but the district ended up saying she was no longer qualified. So she took her out of the school district.

“Because of the situation in special education, we have pulled her out of Central. She is currently homeschooling in hopes that they will do some corrective action in the department. Then she can go back and get the support she needs,” said Dugan.

She says she and many parents love the school district and just want the best for their children.

“We do love Central and we do love Davenport. We just really hope we can get them back in compliance with the laws,” said Dugan.

In light of the audit, some parents have come together and have launched a group called
District Wide Davenport. They will have their first meeting on Thursday at 5:30 p.m. at the Davenport Public Library Fairmount.

The district must follow up on corrective actions by September. Another check for progress will also be conducted in February 2019.