DOJ sues Georgia over segregated schools for disabled students

DOJ sues Georgia over segregated schools for disabled students
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The Department of Justice (DOJ) has filed a lawsuit against Georgia over allegations the state is unnecessarily segregating students with disabilities.

The DOJ claims Georgia's Network for Educational and Therapeutic Support (GNETS) programs violate the Americans with Disabilities Act. They said the program provides mental health and therapeutic educational services to students with behavior-related disabilities in segregated settings, denying them the opportunity to interact with students without disabilities.

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About 4,600 students with disabilities are now in the GNETS program.

“Seventeen years ago, the Supreme Court made clear that states must serve people with disabilities, including children with disabilities, in the most integrated setting appropriate to their needs,” Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Vanita Gupta, head of the DOJ's Civil Rights Division, said in a statement. 

“Georgia has relegated thousands of students with behavior-related disabilities to separate, segregated and unequal settings, and placed other students at serious risk of entering such settings, failing to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act.” 

The lawsuit goes on to claim that GNETS students lack equal access to academic and extracurricular opportunities provided to students without disabilities.