Carmen Carley became a special education advocate in 2002 after going through a major struggle with her son’s school district and the California Regional Center after both denied him appropriate services. The Carleys did obtain appropriate services for their son; however, Carmen felt some or all litigation could have been prevented had she been more educated about her son’s abilities and rights. She began to educate herself on special education advocacy, and from January through July of 2006, she attended and successfully completed the first Special Education Advocacy Training (SEAT) through the Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates (COPAA) at the University of Southern California, followed by an internship in a Special Education Attorney’s office.
Carmen has been successfully negotiating and advocating in a professional capacity for children with special needs to ensure their educational needs are met (www.southbaychildadvocates.com) since 2002. She is very passionate about pursuing better learning opportunities and understanding for children with learning disabilities, as she feels many children “fall through the academic cracks” unnecessarily.
Carmen and her husband live in Torrance, CA, with their 13-year-old son and 11-year-old daughter, both of whom have learning disabilities.