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Continued: Catching up with 2013 Whistleblowers

  • Article by: ALEJANDRA MATOS , Star Tribune
  • Last update: December 28, 2013 - 5:13 PM

“We weren’t comfortable with a temporary loan modification that did not offer a permanent solution or did not explain what that would be,” Christensen said.

Jumana Bauwens, a spokeswoman with Bank of America, said Monday that its “attorney contacted the borrower’s attorney today and offered to reinstate the previous loan modification.”

Whether that offer resolves the three-year conflict, Christensen said he could not comment.

Feds looking into policy

The U.S. Department of Education is raising concerns about how the Minnesota State High School League’s transfer policy affects student athletes who have mental health or learning disabilities, according to an attorney who represents students and parents in the proceedings.

Whistleblower reported earlier this month how some parents have had to hire a lawyer to enable their children to play varsity sports after they transfer to new high schools. The league said it does not discriminate against students with disabilities, but its policy generally prevents students who transfer from playing varsity sports at their new school for a year.

The Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights asked Andrea Jepsen, with the School Law Center in St. Paul, to send a memo detailing why she believed the policy was in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act and Minnesota Section 504.

“OCR expressed concern over the league’s approach to handling reasonable modification requests for kids with disabilities,” Jepsen said.

The Office of Civil Rights declined to comment to Whistleblower.

Meanwhile, Jepsen said the league reached a decision on two cases within the past two weeks. One student was allowed to join a varsity dance team because “the judge found that there were special or unusual circumstances that warranted an exception to the transfer rule,” Jepsen said.

The other student, who has neuropsychological disabilities, was denied his request to play varsity sports at his new school, Jepsen said.

 

Alejandra Matos • 612-673-4028 alejandra.matos@startribune.com

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