The cost of sending students with disabilities to private schools paid for by public education dollars soared to $89 million in New York City alone in the last school year, up $31 million from the year prior. Officials blame the surge on a backlog of legal cases following a class action lawsuit. They also say that some parents don’t really want to send their children to public schools, but are simply looking for the school system to pick up tuition costs for private placements, reports WNYC, a public radio station.

Under IDEA, school districts must foot the cost for private school placement if they are unable to provide the appropriate education in a public school setting for a student with a disability.

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