JB vs. Quakertown Community School District

PENNSYLVANIA
SPECIAL EDUCATION HEARING OFFICER

DECISION
DUE PROCESS HEARING

Name of Child: JB

ODR #7242/06-07 LS

Date of Birth: xx/xx/xx

Dates of Hearing: February 20, 2007 March 2, 20007 April 2, 2007

CLOSED HEARING

Parties to the Hearing: Mr. and Mrs.

Quakertown Community School District 600 Park Avenue
Quakertown, Pennsylvania 18951

Representative:
Frederick Stanczak, Esquire
179 N. Broad Street
Doylestown, Pennsylvania 18901

Gina DePietro, Esquire
Sweet, Stevens, Katz & Williams 331 Butler Avenue, P.O. Box 5069 New Britain, Pennsylvania 18901

Date Record Closed: April 18, 2007

Date of Decision: May 3, 2007

Hearing Officer: Linda M. Valentini, Psy.D.

Background

Student is an xx-year-old eligible student residing in the Quakertown Community School District (hereinafter District). He is classified as having speech/language impairment and other health impairment. Mr. and Mrs., Student’s parents (hereinafter Parents), requested this hearing as they believe that Student has been denied a free appropriate public education (FAPE) for the past two years. Specifically, the Parents assert that Student has a specific learning disability in the areas of reading and written expression that has not been identified and addressed, and that his current IEP is not appropriate to meet his needs in the area of academics and specially designed instruction, and in the area of counseling to address anxiety issues. The Parents believe that Student is entitled to compensatory education based upon a denial of FAPE. Additionally the Parents seek reimbursement for an independent educational evaluation.

The District maintains that Student has been provided with FAPE. Specifically, the District maintains that he was properly identified and that his IEP was and is appropriate, and that therefore compensatory education is not due. The District also maintains that the Parents are not entitled to reimbursement for the independent educational evaluation.

The Parents filed for this hearing on December 27, 2006 seeking compensatory education from the 2002-2003 school year through the 2004-2005 or 2005-2006 school years, asserting that the District had engaged in a “continuing violation”. On January 29, 2007 the hearing officer granted the District’s Motion to Limit Claims, setting the parameters of the period under consideration from December 27, 2004 forward.1

Issues

1. Did the Quakertown Community School District fail to identify Student as a student with a specific learning disability, leading to a denial of a free appropriate public education (FAPE)?

2. If the Quakertown Community School District did fail to identify Student as a student with a specific learning disability, and this failure resulted in a denial of (FAPE), is he eligible for compensatory education from December 27, 2004 to the present, in what amount and of what type?

3. Does Student’s current IEP appropriately address his educational needs in the areas of specially designed instruction and counseling?

4. Are the Parents entitled to reimbursement for the Independent Educational Evaluation they obtained for Student?2

JB-Quakertown-Community-ODRNo-7242-06-07-LS

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