2022 ADR Conference has ended
Committing to Action:
Building Partnership to Advance Student Learning
Friday, March 18 • 10:15am - 11:45am
The Benefits of Creating A Special Education Ombuds Office FILLING
Limited Capacity filling up

Historically, students, parents and school districts have had to rely on special education litigation to resolve their disputes within public education systems. As we move into a new era, a few school jurisdictions have created programs that focus on early dispute resolution and emphasize relationship building between schools and families. These are education ombudsman programs that are housed either within the school district or within another entity serving the public school system. For this presentation, we will discuss a proposal to create a Special Education Ombuds Office that offers confidential complaint resolution services to school staff, families and students attending K-12 schools. Participants will learn about the Special Education Ombuds Office operating within the Standards of Practice set forth by the International Ombuds Association. Esther will be discussing her experience in her work creating the Pasadena Unified School District's Ombuds Office and assisting other schools with creating their own ombuds offices. Kim will discuss the findings and recommendations in her research paper, "A Proposal to Create Special Education Ombuds Offices Throughout K-12 Schools," as well as how her experience as a special education attorney lead her to see the value of an ombuds office.  In addition, we will examine and explore case studies related to the benefits of how a Special Education Ombuds Office can work to help resolve conflicts.  Finally, this presentation will discuss tools to establish an effective Special Education Ombuds Office.

avatar for Kim Schulist

Kim Schulist

Mediator and Education ADR Consultant
Kimberly Schulist, Special Education ADR Consultant, Coach and Mediator, has over twenty years of experience representing school districts in special education matters as an attorney in California. She obtained her LLM (Master of Laws) in Dispute Resolution in 2021 from Pepperdine's... Read More →
avatar for Esther Salinas

Esther Salinas

Associate Professor of Education, Education Ombuds Consultant
Esther Salinas, EdD, Associate Professor of Education at Bob Jones University, South Carolina, Education Ombuds Consultant, and former Ombuds Officer for Pasadena Unified School District, has over 25 years of experience in public education as a teacher, principal, district office... Read More →

Friday March 18, 2022 10:15am - 11:45am PDT
Raincross Ballroom A (RB A)