IDEA Complaint Decision 02-029

On April 22, 2002, the Department of Public Instruction received a complaint under state and federal special education law from XXXXX against the School District of West Allis-West Milwaukee. This is the department's decision regarding that complaint. The issues are whether the district, during the 2001-2002 school year, failed to:

  • provide a free appropriate public education (FAPE) to a child with a disability by delaying to enroll the student in school after the student became a resident of the district; and

  • implement provisions of the child's individualized education program (IEP) related to sensory diet, providing weekly pressure log, providing supervision within 15 feet while on the playground, accessing technology, transportation, and, providing deep pressure or brushing techniques.

The complainant maintains that she moved to the School District of West Allis-West Milwaukee on March 8, 2002, and attempted to enroll her child in school. Documentation received from the school indicates that the first contact they had with the complainant was a telephone call on March 11, 2002, indicating that she and her child were residing in the district with her mother. The complainant indicated that this living arrangement was temporary. The district communicated to the department that they and the complainant had agreed to wait, at least a couple of days, before enrolling the complainant's child because the complainant did not want her child to start in one school and then have to move again. Between March 11-15, 2002, the district had several phone conversations with the complainant regarding residence.

On March 13, 2002, the district verified the complainant's residence, however temporary, as being within the School District of West Allis-West Milwaukee. The district scheduled an IEP team meeting for March 15, 2002, and notified the complainant. The complainant could not attend this meeting and another IEP team meeting was scheduled, and held, on March 18, 2002, which the complainant attended. The complainant's child began attending school in the district on that day. The department concludes that the district properly enrolled the complainant's child in the School District of West Allis-West Milwaukee.

The complainant also maintains that her child's IEP was not being properly implemented in regard to providing a sensory diet, weekly pressure log, brushing techniques, access to technology, supervision within 15 feet on playground, and transportation. The complainant stated that she met with the district on March 18, 2002, and on April 12, 2002, to discuss the above issues. The above requirements were stated in an IEP developed on February 28, 2002, by the student's previous district. The district provided the department with the occupational therapy log which indicates that she communicated with the student's previous teacher regarding the provision of a sensory diet. The occupational therapist's log indicates that a sensory diet was provided and deep pressure and brushing techniques were made available. The student had the opportunity to receive deep pressure hourly and brushing techniques two times daily. Notes regarding these services were sent to the complainant.

The occupational therapist's log also indicates that the student had access to assistive technology and was required to use it. There was a period when the use of a computer was limited because the student began playing games rather than doing his work. In regard to supervision, the district responded to the department that the student was never out of an adult's eye-sight and always within range of a voice command.

The complainant maintains that the district did not provide transportation for her child when he first enrolled in the district. In its response to the department, the district acknowledged that bus transportation could not be arranged for two days and an offer to provide transportation via a cab was rejected by the complainant. District staff then transported the student to and from home and school until the bus transportation was arranged. The department has determined that the district properly implemented the provisions of the child's IEP.

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

//signed CST/SJP 6/21/02
Carolyn Stanford Taylor
Assistant State Superintendent
Division for Learning Support: Equity and Advocacy

Dec/kh
For questions about this information, contact Patricia Williams (608) 267-3720