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OAH AND AUTISM PROGRAMS: Sacramento Office 520 Capitol Mall Suite 400 Sacramento California 95814 Tel: 916.443.0000 Fax: 916.443.0030 *Our newest location:

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Presentation on theme: "OAH AND AUTISM PROGRAMS: Sacramento Office 520 Capitol Mall Suite 400 Sacramento California 95814 Tel: 916.443.0000 Fax: 916.443.0030 *Our newest location:"— Presentation transcript:

1 OAH AND AUTISM PROGRAMS: Sacramento Office 520 Capitol Mall Suite 400 Sacramento California Tel: Fax: *Our newest location: WHAT'S REQUIRED- WHAT'S NOT

2 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 2 Overview Autism Spectrum Disorder: What is it? OAH Cases: Preschool, Elementary, Middle & High Schools

3 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 3 Autism: What is it? According to the CDC, the prevalence of autism had risen to 1 in every 150 American children; almost 1 in 94 boys

4 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 4 Autism: What is it? Fastest Growing Category in California School Year Autism 14,03929, % OHI 21,02535, % ED 22,34827, % SLD 349,038328,381– 6%

5 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 5 Autism: What is it? Dr. Leo Kanner 1943 Johns Hopkins University “Autistic Disturbances of Affective Contact” The word “autism” comes from the Greek word “auto” meaning “self”

6 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 6 Autism: What is it?

7 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 7 California Definition Autistic-Like Behaviors Inability to use oral language for appropriate communication History of extreme withdrawal or of relating to people inappropriately, and continued impairment in social interaction from infancy through early childhood Obsession to maintain sameness

8 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 8 California Definition Autistic-Like Behaviors Extreme preoccupation with objects, inappropriate use of objects, or both Extreme resistance to controls Peculiar motoric mannerisms and motility patterns Self-stimulating, ritualistic behavior Ed.Code § ; CCR Title 5, § 3030(g) cont.

9 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 9 Preschool

10 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 10 Preschool: Common Autism Issues Predetermination LRE Methodology 1:1 Aide Medical/Dietary And more…

11 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 11 Preschool: Common Autism Issues Predetermination FACTS: Pre-IEP team meeting to develop assessment plan District administrator spoke to parent regarding assessor’s recommendation Staff discussed possible services student needed before IEP team meeting (Solana Beach ESD (OAH 2008).)

12 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 12 Preschool: Common Autism Issues Predetermination RULING: District did not predetermine placement IEP reflected recommendations of parent and others District did not refuse to consider placement at private preschool (Solana Beach ESD (OAH 2008).) cont.

13 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 13 Practice Pointer Avoid Charges of Predetermination Explain that pre-IEP meetings are for preparation, not decision-making Do not direct staff to take a particular position or refuse to consider a service Consider input of all IEP team members: Parent, private, NPA, Regional Center, etc. Explain that a draft IEP is only a DRAFT

14 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 14 Preschool: Common Autism Issues LRE FACTS: Student was attending private general ed. preschool + 1:1 aide District offered: –A.M. SDC –P.M. Public general ed. preschool + 1:1 aide (Solana Beach ESD (OAH 2008).)

15 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 15 Preschool: Common Autism Issues LRE RULING: SDC met student’s instructional needs But, SDC was not LRE And, general ed. class inappropriate because too many classmates and transitions cont. (Solana Beach ESD (OAH 2008).)

16 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 16 Preschool: Common Autism Issues LRE “The inquiry is not whether the SDC is best for Student. Rather, the inquiry is whether Student should be removed [from] the general education environment because the nature and severity of her disabilities is such that education in regular classes with the use of supplementary aids and services cannot be achieved satisfactorily. Therefore, even if it is not the best academic setting for a Student, a general education classroom is appropriate if the child can receive a satisfactory education there.” cont. (Solana Beach ESD (OAH 2008).) (Emphasis added)

17 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 17 Preschool: Common Autism Issues Methodology Dr. Ivar Lovaas ABA, DTT, PRT, PECS

18 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 18 Preschool: Common Autism Issues Methodology Eclectic RDI TEACCH SUCSESS

19 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 19 Preschool: Common Autism Issues Methodology Based on Peer-Reviewed Research IEP shall include a statement of the special education and related services and supplementary aids and services, based on peer- reviewed research to the extent practicable (20 U.S.C )

20 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 20 Preschool: Common Autism Issues Methodology FACTS: District offered preschool SDC under “SUCSESS” program, including TEACCH and DTT Parent requested ABA home program of 35 hours per week (Anaheim City S.D. (OAH 2008).)

21 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 21 Preschool: Common Autism Issues Methodology RULING: No persuasive authority required ABA home program for student IDEA does not mandate particular methodology. As long as district provides appropriate program, methodology is left to district’s discretion cont. (Anaheim City S.D. (OAH 2008).)

22 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 22 Preschool: Common Autism Issues Aide Support FACTS: Preschooler was receiving 30 hrs/week of ABA from NPA District offered Headstart preschool class + 1:1 aide for 1 month Parent sought 40 hrs/week of ABA from NPA at home and school (Hacienda La Puente U.S.D. (OAH 2007).)

23 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 23 Preschool: Common Autism Issues Aide Support RULING: Placement appropriate, but OAH ordered the district to provide a 1:1 aide for the fall semester and convene an IEP team meeting 30 days prior to spring semester to reevaluate student’s need for a 1:1 aide cont. (Hacienda La Puente U.S.D. (OAH 2007).)

24 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 24 Preschool: Common Autism Issues Medical & Dietary FACTS: Immune & gastrointestinal disorder Strict GFCF Recommended ABA in-home (Lowell Jt. S.D. (OAH 2006).)

25 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 25 Preschool: Common Autism Issues Medical & Dietary District offered pre-K at elementary school Per district physician consultant’s recommendations, reduce exposure to allergens and facilitate learning, IEP included air filter, shoe removal, GFCF school supplies, and 1:1 assistant to monitor environment cont. (Lowell Jt. S.D. (OAH 2006).)

26 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 26 Preschool: Common Autism Issues Medical & Dietary RULING: District designed an appropriate educational program Incorporated physician’s recommendations to meet student’s medical, dietary, and safety needs (Lowell Jt. S.D. (OAH 2006).) cont.

27 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 27 Preschool: Common Autism Issues Changing Program Without Assessment FACTS: 4-year old in SDC - tantrums, screaming, off task Observations, but no assessments Moved to higher functioning social skills class with parent consent (Anaheim City S.D. (OAH 2008).)

28 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 28 Preschool: Common Autism Issues Changing Program Without Assessment RULING: District failed to assess behavioral & cognitive needs Student awarded NPA behavior services as compensatory education (Anaheim City S.D. (OAH 2008).) cont.

29 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 29 Preschool: Common Autism Issues Related Service Description FACTS: District offered two 30-minute sessions of speech-language therapy described as “Individual and Group; Direct and Collaboration; Monitor and Consult.” Staff said the offer included possibility of individual session, no guarantee (Capistrano U.S.D. (OAH 2006).)

30 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 30 Preschool: Common Autism Issues Related Service Description RULING: District failed to make a clear written offer. Of the two 30 minute sessions, student required that one be an individual session; IEP was unclear cont. (Capistrano U.S.D. (OAH 2006).)

31 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 31 Elementary School

32 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 32 Elementary: Common Autism Issues Behavior Placement Description ESY

33 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 33 Elementary: Common Autism Issues Behavior FACTS: 3rd grader, Aspergers General ed. class +1:1 aide Parent was not consulted in assigning student to multi-teacher class Parent alleged it caused student’s behavior problems (Cupertino Union S.D. (OAH 2006).)

34 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 34 Elementary: Common Autism Issues Behavior RULING: Multi-teacher class was appropriate Student’s behavior problems were attributed to his difficulty with the more challenging academic requirements cont. (Cupertino Union S.D. (OAH 2006).)

35 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 35 Elementary: Common Autism Issues Behavior FACTS: 10-year-old boy: AUT, ED, SLI Current district offered SDC, 2 hrs/wk of ABA services, and continued prior district’s BIP New BIP & FAA to target screaming, hitting, and teasing Parent sought residential placement and ABA services of 25 to 35 hrs/wk (Tustin U.S.D./Orange U.S.D. (OAH 2005).)

36 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 36 Elementary: Common Autism Issues Behavior RULING: Both prior district & current district addressed student’s needs with BIPs & FAAs BIP was successful because targeted behaviors began to slow cont. (Tustin U.S.D./Orange U.S.D. (OAH 2005).)

37 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 37 Elementary: Common Autism Issues Behavior FACTS: 10-year-old received ABA-IBI at school for two hours/day and then gradual elimination February: FAA & BIP reviewed, improvement March: Negative behaviors escalated, e.g., bit & hit staff, threw shoes, screamed, etc. May: More biting, parent removed student from school to ABA home program June: Modified BIP presented at IEP meeting (Capistrano U.S.D. (OAH 2008).)

38 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 38 Elementary: Common Autism Issues Behavior RULING: $75,000 for ABA home program b/c FAPE was denied beginning in July when district failed to conduct an FAA and restart IBI-ABA at school cont. (Capistrano U.S.D. (OAH 2008).)

39 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 39 Elementary: Common Autism Issues Placement Description FACTS: June IEP: Proposed SDC not yet in existence, offered for following year Staff said the SDC will have sensory rooms - a trait of the TEACCH method August: SDC was actually ABA based- no sensory room (Yucaipa-Calimesa U.S.D. (OAH 2008).)

40 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 40 Elementary: Common Autism Issues Placement Description RULING: District failed to accurately describe placement because SDC offered in June IEP was not SDC that opened in August. District may not unilaterally change the proposed program after IEP is developed cont. (Yucaipa-Calimesa U.S.D. (OAH 2008).)

41 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 41 Elementary: Common Autism Issues ESY FACTS: 3rd grader achieving above grade level For ESY, district offered 120 hours of ABA services by NPA Parent requested 200 hours and an academic component for ESY (Tustin U.S.D. (OAH 2006).)

42 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 42 Elementary: Common Autism Issues ESY RULING: 120 hours of ABA was appropriate. Student was progressing year-to- year and did not require more to avoid regression cont. (Tustin U.S.D. (OAH 2006).)

43 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 43 Elementary: Common Autism Issues ESY FACTS: 9-year-old in an SDC NPA behavior intervention For ESY, district offered SDC, a 1:1 aide, and 10 hours/wk behavioral intervention For EESY, 15 hours/wk behavioral intervention State revoked NPA’s certification, but parent refused to consider another NPA 10 IEP team meetings! cont. (San Ramon U.S.D. (OAH 2006).)

44 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 44 Elementary: Common Autism Issues ESY RULING: Convening 10 IEP team meetings was reasonably calculated to gain the maximum input ESY and EESY programs were similar to student’s regular school year placement District acted properly in effort to transition from student’s NPA to own personnel cont. (San Ramon U.S.D. (OAH 2006).)

45 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 45 Middle & High School

46 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 46 Middle & High School: Common Autism Issues Transition Support Home Instruction/ Independent Study Parentally Placed Private School Students Aide Support Post-School Transition

47 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 47 Middle & High School: Common Autism Issues Transition Support 5th grade: Diagnosed w/ Aspergers 7th grade: Initial IEP, access to nurse’s office (toilet flushing phobia) 8th grade: Dual placement at middle & high schools. No supports at high school - bathroom accidents Parent enrolled student in NPS 9th grade: District offered placement at public high school (Torrance U.S.D. (OAH 2006).)

48 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 48 Middle & High School: Common Autism Issues Transition Support RULING: Student was awarded reimbursement & prospective placement at NPS due to district’s failure to offer transition support to move from NPS to public high school cont. (Torrance U.S.D. (OAH 2006).)

49 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 49 Middle & High School: Common Autism Issues Home Instruction and Independent Study FACTS: 8th grader with Asperger’s in general ed. class with 1:1 aide Student brought Thor, a service dog, to school, to calm him Parent kept student home when school prohibited Thor (Bakersfield City S.D. (OAH 2008).)

50 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 50 Middle & High School: Common Autism Issues Home Instruction and Independent Study IEP meeting convened due to student’s non- attendance District offered five hours/wk of home instruction IEP notes, “if at any time parent would like to enroll student in school, FAPE offer is available” and “Parent declines FAPE offer and would like ISP (independent study program) not to exceed 30 days” (Bakersfield City S.D. (OAH 2008).) cont.

51 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 51 Middle & High School: Common Autism Issues Home Instruction and Independent Study RULING: Thor was not essential service for FAPE Parent’s unilateral home placement did not alter analysis District informed parent that it was ready, willing, and able to place student in a general education classroom, but without Thor (Bakersfield City S.D. (OAH 2008).) cont.

52 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 52 Practice Pointer Don’t Water Down Offer of FAPE If a parent unilaterally removes a child, clearly communicate the district’s willingness to implement its offer of FAPE Avoid the temptation to pare down the offer of FAPE for the sake of appeasing the parent

53 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 53 Middle & High School: Common Autism Issues Parent Placed Private School Students FACTS: 6th grader, Aspergers, private elementary school In January 2008, parent paid $30,400 for student’s enrollment for at Bridges, a private middle school Parent requested district assessment District proposed NPS, not Bridges (Los Angeles U.S.D. (OAH 2008) )

54 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 54 Middle & High School: Common Autism Issues Parent Placed Private School Students RULING: District’s offer was appropriate Parent predetermined student would attend Bridges before the IEP team meeting Parent had no intention of accepting any placement but Bridges Academy cont. (Los Angeles U.S.D. (OAH 2008) )

55 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 55 Middle & High School: Common Autism Issues Aide Support FACTS: Incoming 9th grader offered general ed., RSP, and 1:1 aide Parent claimed 1:1 aide isolated, stigmatized, and prevented student from forming friendships Parent wanted NPS (Simi Valley U.S.D. (OAH 2007).)

56 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 56 Middle & High School: Common Autism Issues Aide Support RULING: District’s offer of placement was appropriate Student needed a 1:1 aide to maintain focus and facilitate peer interaction, particularly in a new high school Parent’s preferred NPS placement had very few female students, impeding ability to form friendships (Simi Valley U.S.D. (OAH 2007).) cont.

57 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 57 Middle & High School: Common Autism Issues Aide Support FACTS: 16-year-old, PDD-NOS Parent wanted general ed. class with 1:1 aide and speech-language therapy District offered SDC based on past general ed. experience (Corona-Norco U.S.D. (OAH 2005).)

58 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 58 Middle & High School: Common Autism Issues Aide Support RULING: SDC was appropriate Student could not access general ed. curriculum due to cognitive delays Student obtained academic benefit without 1:1 aide or speech-language therapy Student showed academic progress every year except the year he had been placed in general ed. setting cont. (Corona-Norco U.S.D. (OAH 2005).)

59 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 59 Middle & High School: Common Autism Issues Post-School Transition Programs FACTS: Transition Resources for Adult Community Education (“TRACE”) for ages 18 to 22, to transition from high school to adult life Parent desired a private facility located outside district’s boundaries (San Diego U.S.D. (OAH 2006).)

60 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 60 Middle & High School: Common Autism Issues Post-School Transition Programs RULING: The district’s TRACE program greatly exceeded the minimal “floor of opportunity” standard required to provide a FAPE Program mirrored the adult programs to which student would be transitioning at age 22 cont. (San Diego U.S.D. (OAH 2006).)

61 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 61 Autism Program Components General Ed., RSP/SDC 1:1 aide/classroom aides Sp/Lang OT APE FAA/PBIP Transition Plan ESY Transportation Younger Students ABA Older Students Vocational training Counseling See charts in Appendix

62 ___________________________________________________________________________________________ Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP 62

63 Thank you!


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