IDEA Complaint Decision 06-028

On May 25, 2006, the Department of Public Instruction received a complaint under state and federal special education law from XXXXX against the Madison Metropolitan School District. This is the department’s decision regarding that complaint. The issues are whether the district properly responded to a parent’s request:

  • In the fall of 2005 that the district evaluate her child to determine eligibility for special education services; and
  • In the spring of 2006 that her child receive extended school year services during the summer of 2006.

The parent requested that her child be removed from special education. An Individualized Education Program (IEP) team meeting was held on April 25, 2005, to determine continuing eligibility for special education. The IEP team determined that the child was no longer eligible for special education services.

The parent alleges that she verbally requested several times that the district reopen the child’s IEP in the fall of 2005 with no responses from the district. The district maintains that there were several meetings with the parent beginning in September 2005. The district also maintains that the parent was informed of her right to submit a referral for special education at any time. On January 1, 2006, the parent wrote a letter to the district indicating that she wanted the child to be evaluated for possible eligibility for special education services in the area of speech and language. The parent also expressed concerns regarding the child’s fine motor skills and anger management issues.

On February 23, 2006, the district gave the parent an Individualized Education Program (IEP) Approval for Extension of Time. On February 28, 2006, the parent gave written permission to extend the timeline until May 2, 2006. An IEP team met on April 24, 2006, to discuss eligibility for impairments in the areas of speech and language disabilities, emotional behavioral disabilities, and other health impaired. Speech and language disabilities and other health impaired were considered and rejected. The child was found to be eligible in the area of emotional behavioral disabilities. The IEP team determined that the child needed special education services and developed an IEP as well as a behavioral intervention plan. The district properly responded to a parent’s request that the district evaluate her child to determine eligibility for special education services.

The parent alleges that the district did not address request that her child attend summer school or extended school year at the April 24, 2006, IEP team meeting. Neither the parent nor district staff mentioned a need for extended school year services during the meeting. The district is not required to consider extended school year services for each child at an IEP team meeting. If extended school year services are an issue, raised by a parent or another IEP meeting participant, then the IEP team meeting participants must determine whether the child requires extended school year services in order to receive a free appropriate public education. Following receipt of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) complaint in May 2006, the IEP team met on June 9, 2006. The purpose was to review/revise the IEP and determine whether the child required extended school year services. The determination was made that the child did not meet the criteria for extended school year services. The district properly responded to a parent’s request that her child receive extended school year services during the summer of 2006.

Following the April 2006, meeting, the parent contacted the district and alleges she was told that the child would not qualify for summer school. The mother appealed that decision to the district. The district then decided to permit the child to attend the summer school program. The child was enrolled and is currently attending. This is a regular education program, not a special education program governed by an IEP.

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

//signed CST 7/17/06
Carolyn Stanford Taylor
Assistant State Superintendent
Division for Learning Support: Equity and Advocacy

Dec/tg

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