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IDEA Complaint Decision 10-021

On March 17, 2010, the Department of Public Instruction received a complaint under state and federal special education law from XXXXX against the Oak Creek-Franklin School District. This is the department’s decision regarding that complaint. The issue is whether the district, during the 2009-2010 school year, properly developed and implemented transition services for a student with a disability.

On November 24, 2009, an individualized education program (IEP) team meeting was held to prepare for the student’s upcoming job placement stocking cooler shelves in the school cafeteria. The parent participated in the IEP team meeting. Prior to the start of the job, a contract was developed for the student by the transition coordinator and special education teacher. The school staff considered the student’s difficulty with transitioning within school environments and use of profane language. The job contract was individualized per the student’s behavioral needs and included the use of profanity as an infraction of the contract. It also stated after receiving three warnings, the student would be suspended from the job for a week. The parent and student signed and returned the contract.

On January 19, 2010, the transition coordinator and student visited the job site and reviewed the job functions using a written cooler stocking checklist and a day-by-day cooler stocking training schedule. On January 29, the student started the job and was provided a one-on-one paraprofessional who followed the positive behavioral interventions as stated in the IEP. The student was given a warning for swearing over three consecutive days which resulted in a week suspension from the job. After the student’s suspension from the job, the parent expressed concern that the job contract did not meet her child’s unique behavioral needs addressed through the IEP goals and positive behavioral interventions. The parent also stated in an email to the district that her child would not return to the job.

Following the student’s suspension from the job, the parent indicated additional concern that her child was not receiving transition services for approximately six weeks. The student continued to receive transition services as stated on the I-8 IEP transition services page including a one-on-one Independent Study with the special education teacher focusing on learning and practicing proper social behaviors, an Auto I class, the opportunity to work with the Creative Employment Opportunities agency for job placements, and meeting with the DVR counselor to discuss summer job opportunities. The transition services were based on the student’s postsecondary goals. The district properly developed and implemented transition services for the individual student with a disability.

This concludes our review of this complaint, which we are closing.

//signed CST 5/17/10
Carolyn Stanford Taylor
Assistant State Superintendent
Division for Learning Support: Equity and Advocacy