North St. Louis Co. family said school district denied request f -

North St. Louis Co. family said school district denied request for daughter with special needs

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ST.LOUIS, Mo. ( - A North St. Louis County family is battling with a local school district to get proper care for their daughter with specials needs.

The family claims they’ve made a simple request for a female aide to be on the school bus with their daughter in case she needs help, but that request has been denied.

 “They are required by law to provide public transportation to our child, they receive the taxes that you and I pay to provide those services,” said Henry Iwenofu. “So they are not doing her any favors, she's not getting a special favor, it's what's required for them to do.”

Iwenofu’s 16-year-old daughter can’t speak and has autism. He says for years the Special School District of Saint Louis County has provided a female aide for his daughter on the school bus.  However, when his daughter started summer school, a male aide was on the bus along with a male bus driver.

“To have two males with a child that is non-verbal for an hour or so riding a school bus to and fro and maybe on her cycle or could have other female issues, it should be a concern to any parent,” said Iwenofu.

Iwenofu made a request with top district officials for a female, instead of a male to help his daughter on the bus, but his request was denied.

In a statement, the Special School District of St. Louis County said:

"It's the district's practice not to assign any staff by gender unless specific student information is received that warrants the request."

The district could not give information about this specific case for confidentiality reasons.

“Even in prison convicted criminals have this gender accommodation and my disabled child is not able to get it,” said Iwenofu.

The family is in the process of appealing the decision.

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