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Jun 11, 2018 12:43 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Parents To Take New Legal Action Against District After Son Is Rejected From Volunteer Position

The Westhampton Beach School District denied Aiden Killoran, 15, from participating in the district’s summer recreation program. PRESS FILE
Jun 12, 2018 2:57 PM

The Killoran family of Remsenburg plans to file a civil rights lawsuit against the Westhampton Beach School District after the district denied 15-year-old Aiden Killoran, who has Down syndrome, the opportunity to participate as a student volunteer for the district’s summer recreation program.

The district claimed that the tasks necessary for the volunteer position were beyond Aiden’s capabilities, and it would be unfair to other students if Aiden were allowed to participate, according to Christian Killoran, Aiden’s father.

“They never met with Aiden, never evaluated his capacities in any regard. They never engaged in any discussion in regards to tasks he could complete,” said Mr. Killoran, an attorney. “We feel that their actions are predetermined on what Aiden’s capabilities are—they haven’t meaningfully evaluated what he can and can’t do.”

Michael Radday, the district’s superintendent of schools, said he was unable to comment because of the potential lawsuit. “The district has been informed that this matter will be the subject of litigation,” he said. “Accordingly, we are unable to provide comment at this time.”

The student volunteers help run the summer program, which provides recreational and educational activities for students in elementary and middle school, by setting up fields and classrooms and escorting students from place to place—tasks that Mr. Killoran said Aiden would be able to complete, with the help of an aide.

Mr. Killoran said he and his wife, Terri, feel that the district’s actions are discriminatory and retaliatory, because of ongoing lawsuits regarding Aiden’s education.

“The summer will go by, and Aiden won’t be able to participate at all,” he said. “We’re furious.”

This lawsuit will be the fourth active lawsuit filed by the Killorans against the Westhampton Beach School District during their ongoing three-year battle to enroll Aiden full time in the district.

Aiden, who was previously a full-time student at Remsenburg-Speonk Elementary School, is now partially enrolled in the ninth grade at Westhampton Beach High School. He receives support services, like speech therapy, occupational therapy and adopted physical education, at the high school, but for his remaining educational courses, including math and reading, he is home-schooled.

More recently, the Killorans have asked the district to allow Aiden to participate in lunch and elective programs while at the high school, but district officials have denied this request, according to Mr. Killoran.

“They’ve acknowledged that the district certainly has the capacity, but they simply will not do it because they know it affects their ongoing case. So, rather than act in the best interest of Aiden, they continue to act maliciously,” he said.

Westhampton Beach school officials have said for years that they do not have the programs or staffing necessary to educate Aiden, and have recommended that he attend Eastport South Manor School District, where specialized classes already exist.

The Killorans said they are against the idea of transferring Aiden to ESM because his brother Christian, 14, and most of his friends from Remsenburg-Speonk Elementary School attend school in Westhampton Beach. Aiden’s sister, Shannon, 10, attends elementary school in Remsenburg and will transfer to Westhampton Beach Middle School in seventh grade.

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Please consider the most educational and progressive education for your child. Socialization with other students aid independence that he may not be receiving now. I am a retired special ed. teacher.
By sgt202 (69), Hampton Bays on Jun 11, 18 5:56 PM
Oh no .......let the child go to school where they have the staff to educate him at his level of progress....
By watchdog1 (486), Southampton on Jun 11, 18 10:52 PM
???
By sgt202 (69), Hampton Bays on Jun 12, 18 1:24 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By BillWillConn3 (164), Southampton on Jun 12, 18 8:26 AM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By Fore1gnBornHBgrown (4181), HAMPTON BAYS on Jun 12, 18 8:41 AM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By MoronEliminator (151), Montauk on Jun 12, 18 10:13 AM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By Fore1gnBornHBgrown (4181), HAMPTON BAYS on Jun 12, 18 10:25 AM
I have followed a few articles regarding this family. They sure seem sue happy, seems like they use more effort suing people then looking for the something that just might be more appropriate for their child....just saying
By J. Totta (99), Sag Harbor on Jun 12, 18 12:21 PM
1 member liked this comment
May I ask who pays for the aide that would be needed over the summer?
By 2329702 (23), East Quogue on Jun 12, 18 1:08 PM
I for one applauded the Killorans. All they are asking for is that there son not be treated differently because he has a disability. It amazes me with some of these comments that people just don't get the little things in life that matter to our children. They are not sue happy, they are fighting for what is right. Apparently none of you have a child with a disability so you have no idea how that child feels be excluded. And the aide is not a paid position, but volunteer. All you needed to ...more
By yanks27titles (14), eastport on Jun 12, 18 1:34 PM
Because you don't want one child to be deprived of an experience you're saying it's ok to deprive several or more children an experence. Even if it's volunteer, what if it's say swimming lessons or another safety important task? I'm not trying to be mean but reasonable. I admittedly shouldn't be in charge of a bunch of kids. Maybe neither should he. It's not personal. He can still be a part of the camp or whatever....
By lirider (243), Hampton Bays on Jun 12, 18 2:25 PM
If he needs an aide to accomplish task, then he by definition can not accomplish the task. The school though should have gone through the routine testing to document his ability or lack of. I know it is very difficult to accept differences, but I dont want to go go to a Dr. that needed an aide to pass medical school. That doesn’t mean he can’t become something, it means he can’t become everything. None of us can, pretending and hoping can not make everything possible.
By musiclady (4), remsenburg on Jun 12, 18 5:55 PM
1 member liked this comment
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By EVV7902 (2), Westhampton on Jun 13, 18 11:09 AM
This dude is a joke, and the people of WHB have to be sick of their tax dollars funding his law firm. Wonder if he has any other clients than his son...
By Brandon Quinn (154), Hampton Bays on Jun 16, 18 12:37 PM