Presentation on theme: "SPECIAL EDUCATION: Practical Tips About IEPs and Expulsion Hearings"— Presentation transcript:
1 SPECIAL EDUCATION: Practical Tips About IEPs and Expulsion Hearings The Training Institute on Disability Rights
2 Special Education Laws Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act 2004 (IDEA)Section 504No Child Left Behind (NCLB)Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act Act(FERPA)State Laws and Regulations
4 SPECIAL EDUCATION RULE IF IT’S NOT WRITTEN DOWNIT DIDN’T OR WON’THAPPEN
5 Purpose of Special Education To ensure that all children with disabilities have available to them a free appropriate public education that emphasizes special education and related services designed to meet their unique needs and prepare them for further education, employment, and independent living
6 FREE APPROPRIATE PUBLIC EDUCATION FAPESPECIAL EDUCATION DEFINEDSpecially designed instruction, at no cost to parents, to meet the unique needs of a child with a disability,…
7 Least Restrictive Environment (LRE) 20 USC 1412(a)(5) To the MAXIMUM extent appropriate children with disabilities… are educated with children who are not disabled.Removalnature and severity of the disability of a child is such that education in regular classeswith the use of supplementary aids and servicesCANNOT be achieved satisfactorily.
8 Special Education Services 1. RequestWritten Request by Parent, State agency, or school may initiate request for initial case study evaluationSample letters availableKeep a copy with date and time it was delivered and to whom it was delivered
9 Special Education Services 2. ConsentParent can include consent in request letter orSchool must provide parent consent form within 14 days of request
10 Special Education Services 2. Consentfor Case Study EvaluationsParental Consent not referral, starts the Case Study Evaluation (CSE) timeline, which must be done within 60 CALENDAR days (IDEA) – a different timeline may be set by the state. (IL Admin Code: 60 SCHOOL days from Consent)
11 Special Education Services RequestConsentCase Study Evaluation (CSE)Eligibility Meeting –MDCIndividualized Education Program (IEP) meeting
12 Special Education Services 3. Case Study EvaluationVariety of assessment tools must be usedTesting must be done in the “language and form most likely to yield accurate information on what the child knows and can do academically, developmentally, and functionally.”
13 Special Education Services RequestConsentCase Study Evaluation (CSE)Eligibility Meeting –MDCIndividualized Education Program (IEP) meeting
14 Special Education Services 4. Eligibility Meeting –Multidisciplinary ConferenceTeam of qualified professionals and parents decideWhether child is a child with a disability (1401)(3)1. Disability – mental retardation, hearing impairment, speech or language impairments, visual impairments, serious emotional disturbance (emotional disturbance), orthopedic impairments, autism, traumatic brain injury, other health impairments (OHI), or specific learning disabilities (LD or SLD): AND2. who, by reason thereof, needs special education and related services
15 Special Education Services RequestConsentCase Study Evaluation (CSE)Eligibility Meeting –MDCIndividual Education Program (IEP) meeting
16 Special Education Services 5. Individual Education Program (IEP) meetingIEP meeting held at least annuallyIEP TEAMParentsNot less than ONE regular ed teacher (if child IS or may be participating in regular education)Not less than ONE special ed teacher, or where appropriate…special education provider of such childRepresentative of Local Education Agency (LEA)Qualified to provide or supervise special educationKnowledgeable about general curriculumKnowledgeable about availability of LEA resources
17 Special Education Services 5. Individual Education Program (IEP) meetingIEP TEAM Continued..An individual who can interpret the instructional implication of evaluation resultsOther individuals who have “knowledge or special expertise regarding the child, including related services personnel as appropriate: andwhenever appropriate, the child with a disability
18 What’s in an IEP? Present Levels of Performance Goals & Objectives/BenchmarksProgress ReportsSpecial Education ServicesRelated ServicesSupplementary Aids and ServicesSpecial factorsTransition Services (IL 14 ½ and up) – IDEA 16
19 Individualized Education Program (IEP) – annual meeting A Statement of the child’s academic achievement and functional performance – Present Level of Performance “PLOP”
20 IEP GoalsA statement of measurable annual goals including academic and functional goals designed toMeet the child’s needs that result from the child’s disability to enable the child to be involved in and make progress in the general education curriculum; andMeet each of the child’s other educational needs that result from the child’s disabilitySMART goals – specific, measurable, action-oriented, realistic, and time-sensitive
21 Progress Reports The parents need to know about their child’s progress The IEP should specify how the parents will be notified of their child’s progress
22 Special Education and Related Services IEP includes information about types of services a student receivesExamples of related services –OTPTSpeech therapySocial work
23 Supplementary Aides and Services This may be some type of accommodation the student needsCan include staff training
24 Reevaluation - every 3 years Meet to discuss what information the school already has and what information is still neededreevaluation every 3 years UNLESS parent and school agree it is unnecessary
25 What If You Don’t Agree? CONFLICT RESOLUTION OPTIONS 1. DOCUMENTATION2. INDEPENDENT EDUCATIONAL EVALUATION3. REQUEST AN IEP MEETING4. STATE COMPLAINT5. MEDIATION6. DUE PROCESS
26 What about Discipline?Student with a disability may be removed for no more than 10 school days for a disciplinary violation (unless exception applies)More than ten days = change of placement (see following slides for details)Exception: can automatically remove a student with a disability for 45 school days if 1) a weapon; 2) Drugs; 3) Serious bodily injury
27 45 SCHOOL Day Removal Weapon Drugs Serious Bodily Injury “dangerous weapon” 18 U.S.C. § 930(g)(2)DrugsControlled Substance 21 U.S.C. 812(c)§ 202(c)I, II, III, IV, or VDoes not include legally possessed or used substancesSerious Bodily Injury“serious bodily injury” 18 U.S.C. §1365(h)(3)
28 What about Discipline? Suspensions/Removal - All students “removed” are to get services to prevent recurrence of behavior resulting in removal – should be added to IEPExpulsions– FAPE services must still be provided so student can be able to “participate in general education curriculum” and “progress towards meeting goals set out in IEP.”Before an expulsion can take place, must hold Manifestation Determination Review (MDR)
29 MANIFESTATION DETERMINATION REVIEW MDR is a meeting that occurs within ten school days of decision to change a student’s placementSchool’s actions are change of placement when student is suspended for more than ten consecutive days or series of days that “constitute a pattern” exceeding 10 days in a year.
30 What does it mean for behavior to be a manifestation of a disability? Behavior is a manifestation of a disability if:“caused by” the disability or“Direct or substantial relationship to the disability” or“direct result” of the school’s failure to implement the student’s IEPIf student’s behavior is manifestation of disability, student can’t be expelled without parent consent and must be returned to pre-removal placement (unless drugs, weapons, or serious bodily injury)
31 If behavior is manifestation of disability, what must the school do? Functional Behavior Assessment (FBA) – evaluation to show relationship between behavior and what happens in student’s environmentBehavior Intervention Plan (positive interventions)
32 What if behavior is not a manifestation of a disability? If behavior is not a manifestation of a disability, school can use same discipline measures as with other studentsBUT school must continue providing FAPE
33 What if school wants to expel a student who has not yet been found eligible for special ed? Students not yet found eligible for special ed may still be protected by IDEA under certain circumstances:Parent stated in writing to a supervisor, administrator or a teacher that child may need special edParent requested evaluationTeacher/staff expressed specific concerns abut child’s pattern of behavior directly to director of special ed or other supervisory person
34 Student Discipline Not Yet Eligible School did not have “knowledge”Same discipline as non-disabled kidsIf school did have “knowledge,” then the student is protected by IDEA.
35 Expulsion Hearings (in general) An expulsion is a removal of a student from school for more than 10 days in a rowA student may be expelled for a definite period of time from 11 days up to 2 years.
36 What happens before the hearing? School must send written notice of the behavior for which it believes the child should be expelled.School must send notice in writing and by certified mail inviting student and parent to attend expulsion hearing.
37 At the Expulsion Hearing Right to call witnessesPresent evidenceCross-examine District’s witnessesRight to tape record
38 Who will be at the expulsion hearing? Student and parent should go.School District may have an attorney.Often people who were involved in or witnessed the incident are there.A school administrator may be there.
39 Who decides whether a student will be expelled? Depends on the School District. Sometimes the Board of Education of the District makes the decision. Other Districts have hearing officers who make the decision.
40 Can expulsion hearings be appealed? Yes. If a student is expelled, the student can appeal this decision in state court.
41 Expulsions from Chicago Public Schools The Student Code of Conduct (SCC) outlines CPS disciplinary policiesFor a copy, contact the Law Department at (773)If CPS is going to expel a student, the District sends a “Notice of Request For Disciplinary Hearing” letter.Closer to date that hearing will take place, CPS then sends a “Notice of Disciplinary Hearing.”
42 Who is present at CPS expulsions? Hearing Officer appointed by the Board of EducationCPS “Prosecutor”Student and ParentAny witnessesUsually a school administrator
43 Any chance at settling an expulsion hearing? Depending on the offense, CPS and student may come to an agreement for student to attend the SMART program.