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NASP Home NASP Publications School Psychology Review (SPR) Volume 17 Issue 1 (1988) Recent Placement Litigation, Part II,...
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Volume 17, Issue 1 (1988)

Recent Placement Litigation, Part II, Minority EMR Overrepresentation: Comparison of Larry P. (1979, 1984, 1986) With Marshall (1984, 1985) and S-1 (1986)

pp. 22—38

ABSTRACT: In this second of a three-article series on recent placement litigation, the federal court decisions in two 1980s cases involving allegations of discrimination due to over representation of black students in educable mentally retarded (EMR) special education programs were reviewed. In Marshall v. Georgia. (1984, 1985) the district and appeals courts rejected all of the plaintiff claims concerning discrimination and refused to institute plaintiffs’ remedies (rigid IQ cutoff, adaptive behavior outside of school, and so on). In S-1 v. Purlington (1986) a federal court ruled in favor of defendants’ motion to dismiss plaintiffs’ claims and decertify the class of black students because plaintiffs failed to demonstrate harm to named members of the class in a lengthy trial in Florida. Both cases represent stark contrasts and legal contradictions to the famous Larry P. v. Riles (1979, 1984, 1986) case. Implications of these cases for educational programming, placement decisions, assessment, and interventions are discussed in the third article of this series.

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