ORANGE - An animated meeting between the Board of Selectmen and the Board of Education in Orange Tuesday has prompted the BOE to announce plans to bring in an independent council to assess how the district handles special-needs students and their parents.

From processes to budgets, the Board of Selectmen questioned the Board of Education on many issues surrounding the special education program.

Many parents testified last month to the Board of Selectmen that the people they thought were there to protect them, have actually made their lives much harder.

?You used to bring coffee and doughnuts and talk to the teachers and get things straightened out,? said Chris Carlson of Orange. ?Now you just sit there with tape recorders and legal documents?and really fight and that's not the way things should be done for children.?