In a unanimous (6-0) vote, the Regional Board of School Trustees of Lake County denied a petition filed by Mundelein High School District No. 120 to withdraw from the Special Education District of Lake County (“SEDOL”), a special education cooperative composed of 31 Lake County school districts. In June 2017, Mundelein’s Board of Education voted to pursue withdrawal from SEDOL. Following statutory procedures, Mundelein filed its petition for withdrawal with the Regional Board of School Trustees of Lake County in February 2018. Hearings before the Regional Board of School Trustees of Lake County commenced in April 2018 and continued through June 2018, over seven evenings.
To withdraw from a special education cooperative in Illinois, a school district must show that it is in the best interests of its students with disabilities to effectuate such a withdrawal. Although Mundelein presented evidence as to the development of its in-house transition program, the Regional Board determined that Mundelein failed to show how withdrawal would be in the best interests of all of its students with disabilities. SEDOL, represented by Rob Swain and Kaitlin Atlas, on the other hand, presented comprehensive testimony as to the reasons it was not in the best interests of students with disabilities in Mundelein to withdraw from SEDOL and the devastating consequences of the loss of guaranteed access to SEDOL programs for students with significant disabilities.
Please contact Rob or Kaitlin with your questions on the impact of the Mundelein decision.