Detroit drops plan to lay off bus attendants for special-education students

Jan. 14, 2011
District had said it would eliminate 88 of 175 jobs

From The Detroit Free Press: Detroit Public Schools emergency financial manager Robert Bobb has backed off plans to lay off special-education bus attendants. The decision came after two busloads of parents and residents went to the Michigan State Board of Education meeting this week to complain about special-education problems in Detroit, and after the mother of an autistic student sued the district over the planned job cuts.

Earlier...from The Detroit News: The mother of an autistic Detroit Public Schools student has sued the district in federal court to block the layoffs of 88 bus attendants who help kids with special needs. The lawsuit seeks a permanent injunction barring the district from laying off bus attendants. Parent Paula Johnson filed the lawsuit on behalf of her son Joshua Johnson, a fifth-grader at White Elementary. Bus attendants help Joshua Johnson get on and off the bus and protect him from harming himself and others, according to the lawsuit.

EARLIER...from The Detroit Free Press: The Detroit school system plans to lay off school bus attendants who help special education and disabled students. Union officials say layoff notices have been mailed to 88 of 175 bus attendants. The layoffs will be effective Jan. 14. The district has about 15,000 special education students, about half of whom are transported by school bus. The district plans to provide attendants only for students whose individualized education plans require a bus attendant; However, the district has 114 bus routes that require bus attendants, and the layoffs will leave only 87 bus attendants.

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