GL vs. Saucon Valley School District

Pennsylvania
Special Education Hearing Officer

DECISION

Child’s Name: G.L.

Date of Birth: [redacted]

ODR No. 16219-14-15-AS

CLOSED HEARING

Parties to the Hearing: Parent[s]

Saucon Valley School District 2097 Polk Valley Road Hellertown, PA 18055

Representative:

Angela Uliana-Murphy, Esquire Murphy and Murphy, P.C.
106 North Franklin Street
P.O. Box 97

Pen Argyl, PA 18072

Karl A. Romberger, Jr., Esquire
Sweet, Stevens, Katz and Williams, LLP 331 East Butler Avenue
New Britain, PA 18901

Dates of Hearing: June 19, 2015, August 31, 2015, September 3, 2015

Record Closed: September 8, 2015

Date of Decision: September 20, 2015

Hearing Officer: William F. Culleton, Jr., Esquire, CHO

INTRODUCTION AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY

The child in this matter (Student)1 is classified with the disability Emotional Disturbance pursuant to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 20 U.S.C. §1401 et seq. (IDEA). (NT 10.) Student resides within the District and is in sixth grade. (NT 10.)

Student’s Mother (Parent) asserts that the District failed to provide Student with a free appropriate public education (FAPE), in that it failed to place Student in an appropriate placement, and failed to provide appropriate special education services to Student from April 30, 2013 to September 3, 2015. Parent seeks an order that the District provide Student with compensatory education and an appropriate placement prospectively.

The hearing was completed in three sessions. I conclude that the District did not fail to provide Student with a FAPE, and I decline to enter an order for compensatory education or prospective relief. Nevertheless, by way of dicta, it behooves the District to convene an IEP meeting on an emergent basis, in order to address Student’s educational needs as set forth in a recent psychosexual evaluation, as well as in the testimony of Student’s current therapist in this matter.

ISSUES

  1. Did the District provide an appropriate placement for Student from April 30, 2013 to September 3, 2015?
  2. Did the District provide student with appropriate special education services, such that it provided Student with a FAPE, from April 30, 2013 to September 3, 2015?
  3. Should the hearing officer order the District to place Student at a particular, named private day school, or at a private or public school meeting criteria stated by the hearing officer?
  4. Should the hearing officer order the District to provide Student with compensatory education for or on account of any failure to provide Student with a FAPE during the period from April 30, 2013 to September 3, 2015?
G-L-Saucon-Valley-ODRNo-16219-14-15-AS

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