JA vs. Local Educational Agency School District

Pennsylvania
Special Education Hearing Officer

DECISION

OPEN HEARING
ODR File No. 19053-1617KE

Parties to the Hearing Parent
Parent[s]

Local Educational Agency School District of Philadelphia 440 N Broad Street Philadelphia, PA 19130

Representative

Pro se

LEA Attorney
Andrea Cola, Esq.
Office of General Counsel 440 N Broad Street, Suite 313 Philadelphia, PA 19130

Child’s Name: J.A.

Date of Birth: [redacted]

Dates of Hearing: 06/30/2017, 07/17/2017, 07/18/2017, 07/19/2017

Date of Decision: 08/07/2017

Hearing Officer: Brian Jason Ford, JD, CHO

Introduction

This special education due process hearing concerns the education of a student (the Student), who is a student in the School District of Philadelphia (the District).1 The District is the Student’s Local Educational Agency (LEA). The District wants to conduct an educational reevaluation of the Student. The Student’s grandparent (the Grandparent) has withheld consent for the District to conduct the reevaluation. The Grandparent is the Student’s legal guardian, and has all the same rights as a parent for purposes of this hearing. The District requested this hearing to conduct the reevaluation without the Grandparent’s consent. The District also seeks an order permitting it to change the Student’s placement while that evaluation is pending.

The Grandparent also requested a due process hearing against the District. The Grandparent alleges that the District discriminated against the Student based on the Student’s disability. The Grandparent also alleges that the District retaliated against the Grandparent and the Student because the Grandparent advocated on behalf of another student. The Grandparent’s complaint (ODR No. 19171-1617KE), was heard on a single record with this case. Although I must issue separate decisions for each complaint, there is overlap between the findings and analysis in each case.

As discussed in greater detail below, this matter arises under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), 20 U.S.C. § 1400 et seq.

Issues

  1. May the District reevaluate the Student?
  2. May the District change the Student’s placement while a reevaluation is pending?
J-A-School-District-of-Philadelphia-ODRNo-19053-1617KE

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