Special Education Hearing Officer


Child’s Name: H.F.

Date of Birth: [redacted]

ODR Case Numbers:

16024-1415AS 16025-1415AS

Parties to the Hearing: Parent[]s

Walter D. Palmer Leadership Learning Partners Charter School

910 North 6th Street Philadelphia, PA 19123

Pennsylvania Department of Education 333 Market Street / 9th Floor Harrisburg, PA 17101


David J. Berney, Esquire Morgen Black-Smith, Esquire 1628 J.F.K. Boulevard
Suite 1000
Philadelphia, PA 19103

Unrepresented & Non-Participatory

M. Patricia Fullerton, Esquire Elizabeth Anzalone, Esquire 333 Market Street / 9th Floor Harrisburg, PA 17101

Date of Decision: March 31, 2017

Hearing Officer: Michael J. McElligott, Esquire


[The student] (“student”)2 is a [late pre-teenaged] student residing in [redacted local school district]. The student qualifies under the terms of the Individuals with Disabilities in Education Improvement Act of 2004 (“IDEA”)3 for specially designed instruction/related services as a student with emotional disturbance, the health impairment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and speech/language impairment.

The procedural background in these matters is intricate. As set forth more fully below, the student attended the Walter D. Palmer Leadership Learning Partners Charter School (“[] CS”). The student attended CS since preschool. In October 2014, the student was placed by CS in a private school. In December 2014, the student’s parent was informed by the CS, along with the families of other students attending the school, that it would cease operations. At that point, the parent enrolled the student in the [local school district], and the student currently attends a school in the [local school district].

In March 2015, the parent filed with the Office of Dispute Resolution (“ODR”) a special education due process complaint against the CS to which ODR assigned the ODR file number 16024-1415AS. The complaint alleged that the CS had denied the student a free appropriate public education (“FAPE”). In 2 The generic use of “student”, rather than a name and gender-specific pronouns, is employed to protect the confidentiality of the student.
3 20 U.S.C. §§1400 et seq. the same complaint, parent alleged that, since CS was no longer operational, the Pennsylvania Department of Education (“PDE”) was responsible for remedying the alleged denial of FAPE. ODR assigned ODR file number 16025- 1415AS to this complaint against PDE.

Those complaints began a chain of subsequent filings, rulings, and appeals to federal court which, ultimately, culminated in the issuance of this decision at both ODR file numbers, which have been consolidated for purposes of issuing this final decision in both matters.


What should be the value of the compensatory education hours, agreed to between the parent and PDE as a remedy in this matter?


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