Institute Overview

Founded in 1984, originally as a Washington State Institute, this regionally based      conference on special education law serves educators and attorneys from sister states in the Pacific Northwest and attracts attendees from throughout the nation. Parents and parent advocates are also encouraged to attend.

The primary mission of the Institute is to keep practitioners aware of congressional      amendments to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and recent court cases interpreting the Act.  Most faculty are nationally prominent acknowledged school or Plaintiff attorneys with active practices in IDEA litigation.  The Institute also addresses Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act,      Sections 1983 and 1985 of the Civil Rights Act, No Child Left Behind Act, and other federal and state laws affecting the operation and management of special education programs in public schools.

The Institute consists of four general sessions and sixteen workshops over two days. The Institute is preceded by a full day of optional mini-courses providing formal instruction in various special education law topics.

This conference on Special Education and the Law is held annually in the fall.

2015 Program Planning Committee

  • Tina Chang, Program Director, PNW Institute on Special Education and the Law
  • Anne Applegate, AK
  • Donald Austin, WA
  • Sherrie Brown, WA
  • Mert Burns, ID
  • Clayton Cook, WA
  • Carol Davis, WA
  • Michael Harley, NV
  • Jennifer Harris, WA
  • Nancy Johnson, WY
  • Claudette Rushing, OR
  • Mary Schillinger, CA