Felder To Mayor deBlasio: “NYC Is Not Above The Law”


Special needs children, families and educators from across NYC converged on City Hall this morning to demand that Mayor de Blasio force DOE into federal compliance with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and finally put an end to the neglect, pain and hardship suffered at the hands of DOE. Joined by Senator Simcha Felder they delivered a strong and unified message: Mr. Mayor, keep your promise to thousands of special needs children and their families.

“Children who are used to being left out are once again being neglected, this time by the city. We are talking about serving New York’s most vulnerable kids. Today, the torture these families endure at the hands of the city is worse than ever. What they go through, year after year, is cruel and unusual punishment,” said Senator Felder.

In 2014, Mayor de Blasio held a well-publicized press conference detailing his strong commitment to “reduce litigation, streamline paperwork, and ensure parents have a responsive and efficient process to meet their child’s special education needs.” However, over the last few years, while paperwork requirements have increased, the city’s compliance has plummeted, with responsiveness and reimbursements more delayed than ever. A report recently issued by the city Department of Education itself, reveals that its schools failed to meet the 60-day timeline for evaluating students for additional supports or smaller classroom settings in clear violation of federal timelines.

“Parents are under constant stress to meet numerous deadlines and submit mounds of paperwork every single year, despite the fact that their child’s condition is permanent. Unfortunately, the city’s ability to enforce compliance only works one way,” said Senator Felder.

Senator Andrew Gounardes said, “The City is failing our special needs students and families when it drags its feet in fulfilling its settlements. Delays in funding or services, after an already arduous legal struggle, can have a serious effect on a child’s education and development. It is urgent that the City act now to come into compliance legally and do the right thing by our special needs students.”

According to a report from the NYS Education Department, New York City has been out of compliance with federal law (IDEA) for years over its failure to deliver services to special education students. Their report found that the failures were so pervasive, they occurred at virtually every level of New York City’s special education system. Among the City’s most egregious violations of federal law is its failure to meet federally required deadlines.

Assemblyman Peter J. Abbate said, “There remains no doubt that we need to speak in one voice for special needs children. I stand with my colleagues, parents and educators for the needed funding for essential programs and services for the children.”

“The rights afforded under the law are clear, the guidelines are clear, yet despite repeated calls for improvement this administration has let children languish by neglecting its lawful responsibility. The city’s wanton disregard for the law has victimized these families long enough,” said Senator Felder.


  1. The IDEA Act Hmm. The Accursed Fascist Democrat State Education Department Led By Crooked Cuomo, Corrupt Heastie, and their band of thieving Democrats with the support of the Almighty teachers union of perverts, is also violating this act by denying school admission to thousands of unvaccinated children with IEPs around New York State. Get your own corrupt Democrat Fascist houses of the Senate and Assembly in order Felder and stop the lies and hypocrisy of Crooked Cuomo and his Evil Democrat minions.

  2. Hey Flatbush…..we had assumed you had been permanently sidelined from social media due to complications from the measles……I guess not. Oh well

  3. As the parents of a special needs child we appreciate the efforts of senator Felder with this issue.
    What we don’t appreciate is using special needs individuals as props to further any cause.

  4. FlatbushAV: Don’t convince yourself that these issues are one and the same. These special needs children with the purest of neshamos have done nothing wrong, and neither have their families. There is a law in place governing evaluations and reimbursements, etc. The DOE is not above that law. If you have another gripe, it’s a separate complaint. Nothing to do with this.

  5. Flatbush****:

    Stop your rubbish. The conclusion of so many experts in the fields of education, halacha, and medicine is that the vaccination requirements are critical and should not be violated. The abolishing of the “religious exemption” was completely rational and responsible. You can have all the beliefs you want, but the junk science has been reviewed and discarded by the greatest of experts. I will not waste time boring you with facts when your mind is made up. But either put up or shut up.

    You are absolutely correct about the governor and state education department, but the vaxx issue has nothing to do with this at all. There is clear illegality on the part of the mayor and his administration. What I am left wondering is why this is just a flurry of letters, photos, and perhaps some micro-demonstrations. There should be a lawsuit with huge penalties.