IDEA Complaint Decision 07-004

On January 17, 2007, 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, during the 2006-2007 school year, properly determined math instruction to be provided to a student with a disability and properly provided math instruction as identified in the student’s individualized education program (IEP).

The parent contends her child is falling behind her peers in math because the district did not identify her child’s appropriate level of functioning in math during the 2006-2007 school year. On October 12, 2006, the IEP team met to review and revise the IEP, including a review of the child’s present level of academic achievement in math. The present level of academic achievement describes in detail how the child’s disability affects her involvement and progress in the general education curriculum and the regular education environment with reference to visual and mobility functioning. The IEP contains a goal and short-term objectives and supplementary aids and services related to math. The IEP does not provide a present level of academic achievement for the area of math.

State law requires IEP teams to include a statement of the child’s present level of academic achievement and functional performance, including how the child’s disability affects the child’s involvement and progress in the general curriculum. Within 30 days of receiving this decision, the district is directed to develop corrective action to ensure staff understand how to write proper statements of present level of academic achievement, indicating baseline information that sets a starting point from which to measure progress on annual goals, and how the child’s disability affects the child’s involvement and progress in the general curriculum. The district will hold an IEP team meeting to address the child’s academic achievement levels in math and submit a copy of the child’s IEP to the department.

The October 12 IEP states, under supplementary aids and supports, that "modified assignments and tests in math" will be given "when needed (when homework assignments and tests are given)" in the "regular education setting" and special education having "sole responsibility." The parent stated she was informed by her child the teachers did not consistently assist her child with math assignments. On February 19, 2007, the IEP team met to review and revise the IEP and to resolve concerns with the current IEP. During an interview with department staff, district personnel indicated both regular and special education teachers kept anecdotal records on the various times the child was offered assistance with her math assignments. The child confirmed this information. The IEP team determined the child would receive an additional 20 to 30 minutes for study time and a tutor who will meet with the child for one hour per week. The district implemented the child’s IEP with regard to the provision of supplementary aids and services for math assistance.

This concludes our review of this complaint.

//signed CST/SJP 3/19/07
Carolyn Stanford Taylor
Assistant State Superintendent
Division for Learning Support: Equity and Advocacy

Dec/svb

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