This is a redacted version of the original decision. Select details have been removed from the
decision to preserve anonymity of the student. The redactions do not affect the substance of
Pennsylvania Special Education Hearing Officer
Final Decision and Order
ODR File Number: 19160 16 17
Child’s Name: C. C.
Date of Birth: [redacted]
Date of Hearing: 8/31/17
Counsel for the Parents
Joseph W. Montgomery, Esquire, Montgomery Law, LLC 1420 Locust Street, Suite 420,
Philadelphia, PA 19102
Local Education Agency:
Khepera Charter School, 926 West Sedgley Avenue,
Philadelphia, PA 19132
Counsel for the LEA
Maureen P. Fitzgerald, Esquire, 620 Freedom Business Ctr, Su. 300 King of Prussia, PA 19406-1330
Hearing Officer: William F. Culleton, Jr., Esq., CHO
Date of Decision: 10/9/17
INTRODUCTION AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
The child named in this matter (Student)1 is enrolled currently in a private school, placed there by the respondent charter school (Charter). Student was enrolled in the Charter for Student’s kindergarten, first grade and second grade school terms. In November 2016, the Charter placed Student in a private school, where Student was being educated as of the last day of hearing in this matter.2. Student is identified with Speech and Language Impairment and Autism pursuant to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 20 U.S.C. §1401 et seq. (IDEA).
Parent requests due process, asserting that the Charter failed to offer or provide Student with a free appropriate public education (FAPE) while Student was enrolled, contrary to the IDEA and section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, 29 U.S.C. §794 (section 504)3. Parent asserts that the Student was not afforded an Individualized Education Program (IEP) during part of kindergarten; that the Charter offered an inappropriate IEP and failed to implement it appropriately at all relevant times; and that as a result, Parent and family members had to attend Student in the classroom on numerous occasions to deal with Student’s behaviors that impeded education. Parent requests an order that the Charter provide Student with compensatory education for the relevant period. The Charter asserts that it has offered and provided a FAPE at all times.
The parties stipulated to the facts and to the documents to be considered as evidence in this matter. (Stip. 1 through 19; Exhibit CH.) The hearing consisted of oral summations by counsel after the stipulations and exhibits were filed. The stipulations and all exhibits are admitted into evidence, and my findings are based upon them. I have considered and weighed all of the evidence of record. I conclude that the Charter failed to offer and provide a FAPE to Student during the relevant period.
- During the relevant period of time — from the first day of school in Student’s kindergarten year to the last day of school in Student’s second grade year — did the Charter offer and provide a FAPE to Student in compliance with the IDEA and section 504?
- During the relevant period, did the Charter fail to provide Student with appropriate classroom supports for behavior, making it necessary for Parent and family members to attend Student in the classroom in order to control Student’s behavior so as to allow Student an opportunity to access the curriculum?
- Should the hearing officer order the Charter to provide Student with compensatory education on account of all or any part of the relevant period?