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IDEA Complaint Decision 08-072

On August 12, 2008, the Department of Public Instruction received a complaint under state and federal special education law from XXXXX against the Wisconsin Department of Corrections (WDOC). This is the department’s decision regarding that complaint. The issue is whether the WDOC, in March 2008, properly responded to a request for a reevaluation made by the student’s teacher.

On March 3, 2008, a teacher of the student notified the parent of the intent to refer the student for a special education evaluation. On March 6, 2008, this teacher referred the student for a special education evaluation indicating the student should be evaluated for possible speech and language and specific learning disability services. Later, on March 6, 2008, WDOC staff reviewed the student’s special education services and information contained within the referral. They determined an evaluation was not necessary since the student had already been identified as having an emotional behavioral disability, was already receiving special education services and had a current individualized education program in place. WDOC did not proceed with evaluation procedures.

A public agency must ensure a reevaluation of each student with a disability is conducted if the public agency determines the educational or related services needs, including improved academic achievement and functional performance, of the student warrant a reevaluation or if the student's parent or teacher requests a reevaluation. A reevaluation may occur not more than once a year, unless the parent and the public agency agree otherwise. The student’s most recent evaluation was completed on March 27, 2006. At the time of the referral, the referring teacher was the student’s teacher. When the teacher requested a reevaluation, WDOC should have followed reevaluation procedures.

Within 30 days of the date of this decision, WDOC will submit a corrective action plan (CAP) to the department for approval. The CAP must ensure WDOC staff understand how to properly respond to a request for a reevaluation.

This concludes our review of this complaint.

//signed CST 10/6/08
Carolyn Stanford Taylor
Assistant State Superintendent
Division for Learning Support: Equity and Advocacy