Special Education Hearing Officer


Child’s Name: DF

Date of Birth: xx/xx/xxxx

Date of Hearings:
November 7, 2008
January 9, January 12, January 15, January 27, January 28 & February 12, 2009


ODR Case # 9193-08-09-LS

Parties to the Hearing:

Mrs. Laura Fitz
Red Lion Area School District 696 Delta Road
Red Lion, PA 17356


Kelly Darr, Esq.
Education Law Center
1315 Walnut Street/4th Floor Philadelphia, PA 19107

Peter Smith, Esq. Morgan, Lewis & Bockius 1701 Market Street Philadelphia, PA 19103

Stephen Russell, Esq.
Brooke Say, Esq.
Stock & Leader
Susquehanna Comm. Center East 221 W. Philadelphia St./Suite 600 York, PA 17401

Date Record Closed: March 18, 2009

Date of Decision: April 2, 2009

Hearing Officer: Jake McElligott, Esquire



Student is a 12-year old student residing in the Red Lion Area School District (“District”) who has been identified as a child with a disability under the Individuals with Disabilities in Education Improvement Act of 2004 (“IDEIA”)1 and Chapter 14 of the Pennsylvania education regulations (“Chapter 14”)2. Specifically, Student has been diagnosed with deafblindness as the result of a bacterial meningitis infection contracted when he was an infant. In July 2008, the parents rejected an individualized education plan (“IEP”) and recommended educational placement proposed by the District, contending that the proposed IEP and recommended education placement are inappropriate and that Student should continue to be educated under the terms of his current IEP until an appropriate IEP is proposed. Thereafter, the District filed a complaint seeking an order that its proposed IEP and recommended education placement are appropriate.

For the reasons set forth below, this hearing officer’s decision incorporates aspects of both parties’ prayers for relief.



Are the District’s last-proposed IEP and recommended education placement appropriate for Student?


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