Special Education Hearing Officer


Child’s Name: G. D.

Date of Birth: [redacted]

Dates of Hearing:

May 17, 2016 June 3, 2016


Parties to the Hearing: Parent[s]

West Chester Area School District 829 Paoli Pike
West Chester, PA 19380-4551


David Arnold, Esquire
920 Matsonford Road
Suite 106
West Conshohocken, PA 19428

David Painter, Esquire 331 East Butler Avenue New Britain, PA 18901

Date Record Closed: June 3, 2016

Date of Decision: June 14, 2016

Hearing Officer: Jake McElligott, Esquire


Student)1 is a 9-year old student residing in the West Chester Area School District (“District”). The parties dispute whether or not the student should be identified as a student with a disability under the Individuals with Disabilities in Education Improvement Act of 2004 (IDEIA)2, particularly as a student with a specific learning disability.

[Redacted] After the student’s family shared concerns about the student’s achievement in reading, in January 2016 the District issued an evaluation report, finding that the student did not qualify as an eligible student under IDEIA. In March 2016, the student’s parents requested an independent educational evaluation (“IEE”), in the form of an independent reading evaluation, at public expense. Pursuant to 34 C.F.R. §§300.502(b)(1),(2) and 22 PA Code §14.102(a)(2)(xxix), in defense of its evaluation process/report, the District filed the special education due process complaint which led to these proceedings.

For the reasons set forth below, I find in favor of the parents.


Are parents entitled to an IEE,
in the form of an independent reading evaluation,
in light of the District’s evaluation process and evaluation report of January 2016?


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