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IDEA Complaint Decision 08-028

On March 18, 2008, the Department of Public Instruction received a complaint under state and federal special education law from XXXXX against the Whitnall School District. This is the department’s decision regarding that complaint. The issue is whether the district, during the 2007-2008 school year, improperly disclosed information regarding the student’s individualized education program (IEP) and behavior to non-district staff.

On March 11, 2008, an outside agency provider contacted the district by telephone regarding information on a student with a disability. The complainant alleges district personnel released information from the student’s IEP and behavioral concerns without parental consent. Except under limited exceptions, the district may not release pupil records information without parental consent. The district acknowledges it had not obtained a proper release of information for the district to exchange information with the outside agency provider.

Within 30 days, the district will submit a corrective action plan (CAP) to the department for approval. The plan will include provisions to review and revise current district policies on confidentiality of pupil records, as necessary, to avoid any further breach of confidentiality. The plan will also include a training component on confidentiality for all district staff with access to student records.

This concludes our review of this complaint.

//signed CST 5/1/08
Carolyn Stanford Taylor
Assistant State Superintendent
Division for Learning Support: Equity and Advocacy