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IDEA Complaint Decision 13-042

On July 29, 2013, the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) received a complaint under state and federal special education law from XXXXX against the East Troy School District. This is the department’s decision regarding that complaint. The issue is whether the district, during the 2012-13 school year, conducted a special education evaluation and developed an individualized education program (IEP) within the required timelines.

Within 60 days after the district receives parental consent for administering tests or other assessments as part of a special education evaluation, a district must determine if a child is a child with a disability. There are three exceptions to the 60-day timeline; these include transfer students, failure of the parent to make the student available for the evaluation, and students being initially evaluated for a specific learning disability with mutual agreement with the parent to extend the timeline. Upon completion of the administration of assessments and other evaluation measures, the district is responsible for appointing the required members of the IEP team to determine whether the child meets the eligibility criteria for one or more impairments and whether the child needs special education and related services. If the IEP team determines a child is a child with a disability, the IEP team must develop an IEP and determine the child’s placement within 30 days of the determination. There are no exceptions to the 30-day timeline.

On March 25, 2013, the parent requested an initial special education evaluation for his child in writing. On March 28, the notice of receipt of referral and start of initial evaluation was sent to the parent along with the procedural safeguards. Parental consent for the initial evaluation was received by the district on April 12, 2013, creating the 60-day timeline due date of June 11, 2013. On June 7, 2013, the IEP team met to determine eligibility for the child. This date is within the 60-day timeline of June 11, 2013. The district properly conducted a special education evaluation within the required 60-day timeline.

The IEP team determined eligibility for special education and related services on June 7, 2013. The IEP team developed an IEP and determined the child’s placement on August 1, 2013. This date exceeded the 30-day timeline of July 7, 2013. No compensatory services are required because the delay did not impact any educational services during the summer. Within 30 days from the date of the decision, the district must submit a corrective action plan to ensure initial IEPs are developed timely.

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 9/20/2013
Carolyn Stanford Taylor
Assistant State Superintendent
Division for Learning Support