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Rights Training Coalition


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Rights Training Coalition

  1. 1. Parent’s Rights In The Special Education Process Ohio Coalition for the Education of Children With Disabilities
  2. 9. HISTORY <ul><li>It all started with concerned parents . </li></ul><ul><li>36 court cases in 27 states </li></ul><ul><li>11 th and 14 th Amendments </li></ul><ul><li>1865 - Freedom from slavery </li></ul><ul><li>1922 - Women’s right to vote </li></ul><ul><li>1964 – Civil Rights Act </li></ul><ul><li>1973 – Rehabilitation Act </li></ul><ul><li>1975 – P.L. 94-142 (EAHCA) </li></ul><ul><li>1990 – Americans with Disabilities Act </li></ul>
  3. 10. <ul><li>ACTS OR STATUTE </li></ul><ul><li>IDEA ’04’ is a Statute. This is law. </li></ul>RULES OR REGULATIONS Regulations Clarify Statute. POLICIES AND GUIDELINES States and School Districts have Policies and Guidelines in areas such as Attendance, Behavior etc. If Policies are in Conflict with Federal Acts or Regulations, they can be Challenged
  4. 11. Consent: Parent fully informed Parent understands and agrees in writing to proposed activity Parent knows consent is voluntary and can be revoked Evaluation: Procedures to determine if a child has a disability Nature and extent of services needed in academics but must also consider all areas of the child’s functioning Personally identifiable information includes: Name, address, personal identifier and/or a list of personal characteristics CONSENT Evaluation Definitions The short happy life of a parent Advocate © PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  5. 12. Parents must be given the opportunity to participate in all meetings related to the identification, evaluation, educational placement and the provision of FAPE for their child Parents are part of the group that make the decision regarding their child’s eligibility Parents are part of the group that make the decision regarding their child’s educational placement Participation in meetings © PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  6. 13. <ul><li>PARENT means a natural or adoptive parent, a guardian, a person acting as a parent, or a surrogate parent who has been appointed </li></ul><ul><li>Unless State law prohibits , a State may allow a foster parent to act as a parent if parental authority to make educational decisions has been extinguished, and the foster parent : </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>has an ongoing long-term parental relationship with the child </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>is willing to make educational decisions </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>has no interest that conflicts with the interests </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>of the child </li></ul></ul>PARENT  PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  7. 14. SURROGATE  PACER Center, Inc., 1999 PARENT <ul><li>A Surrogate Parent is a person appointed to represent a child with a disability in special education planning when: No parent can be identified </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>No parent can be located, or </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Is a ward of the State </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>THE SURROGATE: </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Is not an employee of the SEA, LEA, or agency involved in the education/care of the child </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Cannot have a conflict of interest </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Has knowledge and skills </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  8. 15. <ul><li>Ages 3 through 21* </li></ul><ul><li>Mental Retardation (Cognitive Disability) </li></ul><ul><li>Hearing Impairments Including Deafness </li></ul><ul><li>Speech or Language Impairments </li></ul><ul><li>Visual Impairments Including Blindness </li></ul><ul><li>Serious Emotional Disturbance (emotional disturbance) </li></ul><ul><li>Orthopedic Impairments </li></ul><ul><li>Autism </li></ul><ul><li>Traumatic Brain Injury </li></ul><ul><li>Other Health Impairments </li></ul><ul><li>Specific Learning Disabilities </li></ul><ul><li>Deaf/Blindness </li></ul><ul><li>Multiple Disabilities </li></ul>
  9. 16. <ul><li>1. Free and Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) </li></ul><ul><li>2. Appropriate Evaluation </li></ul><ul><li>3. Individualized Education Program (IEP) </li></ul><ul><li>4. Least Restrictive Environment (LRE) </li></ul><ul><li>5. Parent/Student Participation in Making </li></ul><ul><li>Decisions </li></ul><ul><li>6. Procedural Safeguards </li></ul>
  10. 17. Free, Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) means SPECIAL EDUCATION and RELATED SERVICES that are provided: FAPE  PACER Center, Inc., 1999 At Public Expense Under Public Supervision At No Cost to Parents Meets the Standards of the SEA Include Preschool, Elementary or Secondary School Are Provided in Conformity with an IEP Applies to All Children with Disabilities, Including Those Who Have Been Suspended or Expelled From School
  11. 18. REQUESTING EVALUATIONS <ul><li>Tips for parents: </li></ul><ul><li>ask for evaluation in writing; keep </li></ul><ul><li>a copy of your request </li></ul><ul><li>explain your child’s problems and why </li></ul><ul><li>you think evaluation is needed </li></ul><ul><li>be sure to share important information with school </li></ul><ul><li>staff about your child’s performance, and your </li></ul><ul><li>concerns </li></ul><ul><li>you must give informed consent </li></ul><ul><li>for the evaluation to take place </li></ul>© PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  12. 19. <ul><li>Initial </li></ul><ul><li>Evaluation </li></ul><ul><li>To determine: </li></ul><ul><li>if child has a disability and needs special education and related services </li></ul><ul><li>present levels of performance and educational needs </li></ul>Cat Dixie Evaluation results will be used to develop an IEP for an eligible child Testing in Progress © PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  13. 20. Parental Consent <ul><li>Written Parental Consent Must Be Obtained Before: </li></ul><ul><li>The Initial Evaluation or Re-evaluation </li></ul><ul><li>Upon re-evaluation </li></ul><ul><li>Upon receipt of request for due process </li></ul><ul><li>Upon change in placement for disciplinary action </li></ul><ul><li>The initial evaluation and eligibility must be completed within 60 days of receiving parental consent. </li></ul><ul><li>Parental consent is not required for a </li></ul><ul><li>review of existing data as part of an </li></ul><ul><li>evaluation or re-evaluation. </li></ul>
  14. 21. PARENT CONSENT FOR EVALUATION PARENT CONSENT MAY BE GIVEN BY: Sample consent form Pull down the consent form from the OEC Website Parents may also give consent by writing a letter requesting an evaluation and stating consent
  15. 22. Evaluation Procedures © PACER Center, Inc., 1999 (c) (1) Any standardized tests given must be : validated for the purpose that it is used used by persons who are trained/knowledgeable used according to test instructions (d) (2) Any change from the standard evaluation conditions: must be included in the evaluation report
  16. 23. <ul><li>(a) Tests and other evaluation materials: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>will not discriminate based on race or culture </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>are given in child’s native language or mode of communication unless it is clearly not feasible </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>to do so </li></ul></ul><ul><li>(b) A variety of tools </li></ul><ul><li>and strategies are used </li></ul><ul><li>to determine: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>if child is a “child with a disability” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>contents of the IEP </li></ul></ul>Evaluation Procedures © PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  17. 24. <ul><li>(d) Tests and evaluation materials must </li></ul><ul><li>measure more than just I.Q. </li></ul><ul><li>( e) Tests should accurately measure aptitude or achievement, and not simply reflect a child’s impaired skills </li></ul><ul><li>(f) No single test can be used to determine: </li></ul><ul><li>if child has disability </li></ul><ul><li>what services are needed </li></ul>Evaluation Procedures © PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  18. 25. Evaluation Procedures (g) Child must be assessed in all areas of suspected disability (h) Evaluation identifies all needs, whether or not commonly linked to the disability category (i) Public agencies must use technically sound instruments (j ) Assessment tools must provide relevant information that assists persons in determining educational needs © PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  19. 26. Individualized Education Programs <ul><li>In effect- </li></ul><ul><li>at beginning of year </li></ul><ul><li>before services are provided </li></ul><ul><li>Implemented - </li></ul><ul><li>as soon as possible </li></ul><ul><li>following the meeting </li></ul>Accessible to- each regular and special education teacher and others responsible for its implementation <ul><li>Teachers and </li></ul><ul><li>providers know - </li></ul><ul><li>responsibilities in implementing IEP </li></ul><ul><li>specific accommodations, </li></ul><ul><li>modifications and supports to </li></ul><ul><li>be provided </li></ul><ul><li>An IFSP may </li></ul><ul><li>serve as an IEP </li></ul><ul><li>for children 3 - 5, </li></ul><ul><li>if- </li></ul><ul><li>using that plan is consistent with State policy, and </li></ul><ul><li>agreed to by parents </li></ul><ul><li>The public agency shall- </li></ul><ul><li>provide to parents a detailed explanation of the differences between an IFSP and an IEP </li></ul><ul><li>If parents choose IFSP, obtain written informed consent from parents </li></ul>© PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  20. 27. Students with Specific Learning Disabilities <ul><li>Additional team members to determine </li></ul><ul><li>whether the child is a “child with a disability” </li></ul><ul><li>the child’s regular teacher, or, if the child has no </li></ul><ul><li>regular teacher, a regular classroom teacher </li></ul><ul><li>qualified to teach a child of his or her age </li></ul><ul><li>for a child of less than school age, a teacher of </li></ul><ul><li>that age group, and </li></ul><ul><li>at least one person qualified to conduct individual diagnostic evaluations, such as the school psychologist or remedial reading teacher </li></ul>
  21. 28. Independent Educational Evaluation (IEE) <ul><li>If parent disagrees with public agency’s </li></ul><ul><li>evaluation, the agency must: </li></ul><ul><li>provide an IEE at public expense, or </li></ul><ul><li>initiate a hearing to show that its’ </li></ul><ul><li>evaluation is appropriate </li></ul><ul><li>If a parent initiates a privately funded IEE: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>if evaluation meets public agency criteria, results must be considered in planning IEP </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>IEE may be used as evidence at a due process hearing </li></ul></ul></ul>© PACER Center, Inc., 1999 ..provided by a qualified person who is not an employee of the public agency
  22. 29. A child cannot be determined to have a disability based on a lack of instruction in math, reading or limited English proficiency, if the child does not otherwise meet eligibility requirements A group of qualified professionals and the parent determine the need for special education and related services ELIGIBILITY- who determines? based on evaluation <ul><li>Public agencies must give parents a copy of the: </li></ul><ul><li>evaluation report </li></ul><ul><li>documentation of the eligibility determination </li></ul>© PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  23. 30. Placement When FAPE is an Issue <ul><li>If a child who had previously received services is </li></ul><ul><li>enrolled in a private preschool, elementary or </li></ul><ul><li>secondary school by their parents without consent of </li></ul><ul><li>the public agency, the parent must: </li></ul><ul><li>At the most recent IEP meeting before removal, parents must inform the IEP team they are rejecting the proposed placement with concerns as to why and their intent to enroll in a private school; or, </li></ul><ul><li>Given written notice to the public agency 10 business days prior to removing their child from the public school. (Written notice must contain the same information described above.) </li></ul>
  24. 31. <ul><li>Written notice - whenever the public agency proposes or refuses to initiate or change: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>identification </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>evaluation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>educational placement </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>provision of FAPE </li></ul></ul>Prior Written Notice © PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  26. 33. Prior Written Notice <ul><li>Content of notice- </li></ul><ul><li>proposed or refused action </li></ul><ul><li>why action is proposed or refused </li></ul><ul><li>options considered & rejected </li></ul><ul><li>all records used by the district in reaching a decision </li></ul><ul><li>other factors relevant to proposal or refusal </li></ul><ul><li>where parents may obtain procedural safeguards </li></ul><ul><li>who parents can contact about understanding their rights </li></ul><ul><li>Notice must be in understandable language </li></ul><ul><li>Understandable to the general public </li></ul><ul><li>in the parent’s native language </li></ul>© PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  27. 34. <ul><li>parent expressed in writing that the child needed special education and related services </li></ul><ul><li>behavior demonstrates need for services </li></ul><ul><li>parent has requested an evaluation </li></ul><ul><li>teacher or other personnel expressed concern about child’s behavior or performance in accordance with the child find or special education referral system </li></ul>A child may assert the protections of the discipline section of IDEA if the LEA “had knowledge” he or she was a child with a disability: Children not yet Eligible © PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  28. 35. <ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>If an LEA does not “have knowledge” that a child has a disability, the child may be subjected to regular discipline </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>If evaluation is requested during the disciplinary period, it must be expedited. Until evaluation is completed, child remains in placement determined by school authorities </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>If the child is found to have a disability, the agency shall provide special education and related services. </li></ul></ul></ul></ul>No basis of Knowledge © PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  29. 36. <ul><li>PACER Center, Inc. 1998 </li></ul>Reevaluation least once every three years, or more often if parent or teacher requests or conditions warrant a group of persons shall- <ul><ul><ul><ul><li>identify any additional data needed to determine </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>if child continues to have a disability, and continues to need special education and related services </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>present levels of performance and educational needs </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>if additions or modifications are needed to the special education and related services </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>review existing data </li></ul></ul><ul><li>PACER Center, Inc. 1998 </li></ul>© PACER Center, Inc., 1999 Parents must give INFORMED CONSENT if additional assessment is needed The group of persons that review the data is the same membership as an IEP team, and others, as appropriate The group may conduct its review without a meeting
  30. 37. <ul><li>The public agency will notify parents in writing: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>of the determination and the reasons for it </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>of the parents’ right to request assessment to determine whether their child continues to qualify for special education and related services </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The public agency is not required to conduct </li></ul><ul><li>an assessment unless requested to do so </li></ul><ul><li>by parents </li></ul>What if we want our child to be reassessed? Reevaluation If additional data is not needed to determine that the child continues to be a“child with a disability” then © PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  31. 38. Keep records! Medical records School records -assessments -IEPs -discipline reports Letters Observations Telephone notes, etc . © PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  32. 39. School Records Right to inspect and review all educational records in child’s file An agency may presume that the parent has authority to inspect and review his or her child’s records unless the agency has been advised otherwise under applicable State laws highly confidential! © PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  33. 40. <ul><li>Procedural safeguards notice must be given upon- </li></ul><ul><li>initial referral for evaluation </li></ul><ul><li>notification of an IEP meeting </li></ul><ul><li>reevaluation </li></ul><ul><li>receipt of request for due process hearing </li></ul><ul><li>Contents of notice : full explanation of specific procedural safeguards available to parents and the State complaint procedures </li></ul><ul><li>Notice must be in understandable language </li></ul>Procedural Safeguards Notice © PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  34. 41. State Complaint Procedures <ul><li>Time limit of 60 days to investigate and issue a written decision </li></ul><ul><li>Time extension only if exceptional circumstances exist </li></ul><ul><li>Procedures for implementing final </li></ul><ul><li>decision </li></ul>© PACER Center, Inc., 1999 A complaint is an allegation that the law is not being followed STOP
  35. 42. © PACER Center, Inc., 1999 A complaint is an allegation that the law is not being followed STOP <ul><li>A complaint </li></ul><ul><li>must include: </li></ul><ul><li>Statement that a public agency has violated a requirement of Part B </li></ul><ul><li>Facts on which statement is based </li></ul><ul><li>Violation occurred not more than one year from the date a complaint is received, unless a longer time is reasonable because: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>the violation is continuing, or </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>the complainant is seeking compensatory education for a violation that is not more than 3 years old </li></ul></ul>
  36. 43. Mediation <ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>voluntary </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>timely </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>impartial </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>no cost </li></ul></ul><ul><li>confidential </li></ul><ul><li>written agreement </li></ul><ul><li>may not deny or delay right to hearing </li></ul>© PACER Center, Inc., 1999 Can we talk?
  37. 44. 45 <ul><li>45 days from receipt of request for hearing: </li></ul><ul><li>A decision is reached </li></ul><ul><li>A copy of decision is mailed to each party </li></ul><ul><li>30 days from receipt of request for review of hearing decision: </li></ul><ul><li>A decision is reached </li></ul><ul><li>A copy of decision is </li></ul><ul><li>mailed to each party </li></ul><ul><li>A hearing review officer may </li></ul><ul><li>grant time extensions </li></ul>30 Due Process Hearing © PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  38. 45. NOTICE Due Process Hearing Parent or public agency may initiate: © PACER Center, Inc., 1999 <ul><li>Parent must provide notice in a request for a hearing : </li></ul><ul><li>Child’s name, address and school </li></ul><ul><li>The problem the parent has </li></ul><ul><li>The solution the parent wants </li></ul><ul><li>Public Agency must provide: </li></ul><ul><li>Information to parents about availability of mediation </li></ul><ul><li>Information on free or low-cost legal services </li></ul><ul><li>A model form to assist parents with request </li></ul>
  39. 46. RESOLUTION SESSION MEETING <ul><li>Within 15 days of receiving a parental due process complaint and prior to the due process hearing </li></ul><ul><li>LEA convenes a meeting with parents and rest of IEP team members </li></ul><ul><li>LEA attorney may not be present if parent is not accompanied by attorney </li></ul>
  40. 47. RESOLUTION MEETING continued … <ul><li>Discussion of due process complaint and facts </li></ul><ul><li>that form the basis of complaint </li></ul><ul><li>Meeting does not take place IF : </li></ul><ul><ul><li>the parents and LEA agree in writing not to have the meeting or… </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The parents and the LEA agree to use the mediation process </li></ul></ul>There is a 30 day timeline in which to resolve the due process complaint. If after that time the due process complaint is not resolved the due process hearing may take place. The 45 day timeline for the due process hearing begins if both parties agree in writing not to hold the resolution session or if a mediation agreement is not reached or if an agreement to extend mediation is written.
  41. 48. Decision within 45 days with no exception or extensions Hearing officer must be impartial (no conflict of interest) Decision may be appealed (using normal appeal procedures) Expedited Hearing © PACER Center, Inc., 1999
  42. 49. QUESTIONS ? <ul><li>THANK YOU </li></ul><ul><li>Ohio Coalition for the Education of </li></ul><ul><li>Children with Disabilities </li></ul>
  43. 50. Early Intervention Amendments <ul><li>For children ages birth to three years </li></ul><ul><li>Lead agency is the Ohio Department of Health </li></ul><ul><li>Provided in a natural environment </li></ul><ul><li>Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) </li></ul><ul><li>Service Coordination </li></ul><ul><li>Transition Conference that includes local school district representative </li></ul>
  44. 51. <ul><li>Children in early intervention programs </li></ul><ul><li>must experience a smooth and effective </li></ul><ul><li>transition to preschool programs </li></ul><ul><ul><li>By the 3rd birthday of the child, an IEP or IFSP must be in effect </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Each LEA will participate in transition planning conferences arranged by the </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>lead agency </li></ul></ul>© PACER Center, Inc., 1999 Transition From Early Intervention to Preschool Programs