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IDEA Complaint Decision 18-024

On March 7, 2018, the Department of Public Instruction (department) received a complaint under state and federal special education law from XXXXX (parent) against the XXXXX (district). This is the department’s decision regarding that complaint. The issue is whether the district, beginning March 7, 2017, properly provided the parent of a student with a disability periodic reports on the progress the student is making toward meeting annual goals as described in the student’s individualized education program (IEP).

The student was placed in a private school by the district. The student’s IEP specifies the parents will be notified quarterly of the student’s progress toward the annual IEP goals. The private school developed written quarterly reports on the student’s progress toward IEP goals and sent them to the student’s case manager at the district. The reports are dated 4/7/2017 (3rd quarter progress report), 6/9/2017 (4th quarter), 1/26/2018 (2nd quarter), and 3/23/2018 (3rd quarter). The student’s annual IEP team meeting is in October; first quarter progress toward meeting IEP goals for the 2017-18 school year was reported during the IEP team meeting. It is the private school’s practice to report on progress toward annual IEP goals during the annual IEP team meeting and not issue a separate written progress report that quarter. The parent did not receive copies of the written progress reports. The district presumed the parent was receiving copies from the private school, as this has been past practice. The parent expressed concern to the private school about not receiving the progress reports. A copy of the 3rd quarter 2017-18 progress report was provided to the parent on April 4, 2018, by the private school.

When an IEP team places a student with a disability in a private school, responsibility for compliance with special education requirements remains with the district. The specific times that progress reports are provided to parents and the specific manner and format in which a student’s progress toward meeting the annual goals is reported is determined by the IEP team. The student’s IEP required quarterly reports to be provided to the student’s parent on the progress the student is making toward meeting the annual goals. The district acknowledges there was a breakdown in communication between the private school and the district. The district has clarified with the private school the procedures for reporting progress to the parent to ensure progress reports are provided as specified in the student’s IEP. The district has also instituted an internal control system to verify this occurs. The district has provided to the parent copies of the progress reports dated 4/7/2017 (3rd quarter progress report), 6/9/2017 (4th quarter), 1/26/2018 (2nd quarter), and 3/23/2018 (3rd quarter). No further action is required.

This concludes our review of this complaint. This decision is final for the IDEA State Complaint process.

//signed CST:pmw 5/3/2018
Carolyn Stanford Taylor
Assistant State Superintendent
Division for Learning Support
For questions about this information, contact Margaret Resan (608) 267-9158