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IDEA Complaint Decision 10-009

On February 4, 2010, the Department of Public Instruction received a complaint under state and federal special education law from XXXXX against the Pewaukee School District. This is the department’s decision regarding that complaint. The issue is whether the district, during the 2009-2010 school year, properly responded to a parent’s request for an individualized education program (IEP) team meeting.

On January 4, 2010, the parent contacted district staff to request an IEP team meeting. Over the next few weeks, the district and the parent communicated back and forth, and the parties agreed to meet on January 21, 2010. On January 21, the IEP team members met, and the parent attended the meeting. Although they discussed the student’s IEP and revisions, district staff believed the IEP could not be changed during that meeting because the district had not provided proper notice of the IEP team meeting to the parent. During the meeting, the district assured the parent they would schedule an IEP meeting as soon as possible. Again the parties communicated back and forth to find a mutually agreeable time. The IEP team met and made changes to the IEP on February 22, 2010.

The parents of a child with a disability may request an IEP team meeting at any time, and districts must grant any reasonable parent request. Because it took the district eight weeks to address the request for an IEP meeting, the district failed to properly respond to a parent’s request.

Within 30 days of the date of this decision, the district must submit a proposed corrective action plan to the department. The proposed corrective action plan must ensure all district staff properly respond to a parent’s request for an IEP meeting. Child specific corrective action is not required because an IEP team meeting for the child was held, which the parent attended.

All noncompliance identified above must be corrected as soon as possible, but in no case more than one year from the date of this decision. This concludes our review of this complaint.

//signed CST 3/19/10
Carolyn Stanford Taylor
Assistant State Superintendent
Division for Learning Support: Equity and Advocacy