Special Education Hearing Officer
Due Process Hearing for K.M.
Date of Birth: xx/xx/xx
ODR File No.: 7768/06-07 KE
Dates of Hearing: July 31, 2007 August 1, 2007 August 13, 2007
Parties to the Hearing:
Mr. and Mrs.
Mr. Christ Groppe, Director of Special Education Tredyffrin/Easttown School District
738 First Avenue
Berwyn, PA 19312
Robert Lear, Esquire
Law Office of Caryl Oberman Grove Summit Office Park 607A North Easton Road Willow Grove, PA 19090
Lawrence D. Dodds, Esquire Wisler Pearlstine, LLP
484 Norristown Road, Suite 100 Blue Bell, PA 19422
Dates Transcripts Received: August 5, 9, 15, 2007
Record Closed: September 7, 2007
Date of Decision: September 22, 2007
Hearing Officer: Rosemary E. Mullaly
I. Background and Procedural History
The Student is a xx-year-old resident of the Tredyffrin/Easttown School District (“District”) who attends his neighborhood school. He is eligible for services under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act as a child with an autism spectrum disorder. The Parents believe that he has in the past and continues to make meaningful educational progress at his neighborhood school according to the District’s IEP in a part-time learning support classroom and seek an order maintaining his current placement. The District does not believe the Student is making meaningful education progress in his current placement, and seek an order changing his placement to an autistic support classroom in an alternative District school as close as possible to the Student’s home.
B. Procedural History
The Office for Dispute Resolution received the parents’ hearing request in this matter on June 8, 2007. This matter was originally scheduled for July 10, 2007, but a mutually-requested continuance was granted rescheduling the first hearing session for July 31 2007. The mandatory resolution meeting took place on July 9, 2007. The three-session hearing was held on July 31, August 1, and August 13, 2007. The hearing officer received the transcripts of the proceedings on August 5, 9, and 15, 2007. The hearing record was closed on September 7, 2007 upon receipt of the parties written closing statements.
III. Issues Presented
- What burden of persuasion applies to this matter?
- Whether the Student’s progress in the part-time learning support setting
between April 2006 and May 2007 was meaningful?
- If the Student’s progress was not meaningful, whether with the use of
supplementary aids and services the Student’s education could be achieved satisfactorily in the same school he would attend if he were not disabled?