Punishing the Family

There has been an ongoing court case in Texas that is the ultimate nightmare for many parents of special education students.  Chuka Chibuogwu is a young man with autism who was in the Alief Independent School District (AISD).  His parents decided to challenge AISD because they felt the school district was not doing its best to educate their son.  After much fighting, they gave up and pulled their son from school.  And that is when things became ugly.

AISD decided to sue the Chibuogwu family to recoup its legal fees due to their challenges.  After losing at lower courts, AISD even appealed to the Federal 5th Circuit Court, one of the highest courts in the nation.  Despite almost 6 years of legal fights, AISD has yet to triumph over the Chibuogwu family.  Yet just last month they filed another Federal appeal after failing to get the Chibuogwu family to sign a letter of apology to the district in a settlement.

At this point, the district has spent hundred of thousands of taxpayer dollars on the case.  The have lost repeatedly in the courts and even if they win, the family will be bankrupted long before the district would see all of their money.  Most observers believe that AISD is deliberately bullying the Chibuogwu family in an attempt to scare off anyone who would challenge how they educate their children.  In fact, the lawyer for AISD had previously run a seminar on how to financially penalize families who battle against schools.



So what are your thoughts on this case?  Is AISD defending itself or acting like a schoolyard bully?