MD vs. Central Bucks School District

PENNSYLVANIA
SPECIAL EDUCATION HEARING OFFICER

DECISION
DUE PROCESS HEARING

Name of Child: M.D.

ODR #15949 / 14-15-AS

Date of Birth: [redacted]

Dates of Hearing: May 19, 2015 June 26, 2015 July 1, 2015 September 23, 2015 November 3, 2015 November 4, 2015

CLOSED HEARING

Parties to the Hearing: Parent[s]

Central Bucks School District 16 Welden Drive Doylestown, PA 18901

Representative:
Ilene Young, Esquire
Law Offices of Ilene young 172 Middletown Boulevard Langhorne, PA 19047

Scott Wolpert, Esquire
Timony Knox
400 Maryland Drive PO Box 7544 Fort Washington, PA 19034

Date Record Closed: December 15, 2015

Date of Decision: January 19, 2016

Hearing Officer: Linda M. Valentini, Psy.D., CHO Certified Hearing Official

Background

Student1 is a post-high school age individual formerly enrolled in the District who was eligible for special education pursuant to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act [IDEA] and Pennsylvania’s Chapter 14 under the classification of Other Health Impairment2 (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder [OCD] and Anxiety Disorder3). Prior to being identified as eligible under the IDEA and Chapter 14 Student was identified as a qualified handicapped person / protected handicapped Student under §504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. §794) and Pennsylvania Chapter 15.

The Parents asked for this hearing under the IDEA, Section 504 and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)4 alleging that the District denied Student a free, appropriate public education (FAPE) under inappropriate and/or not implemented 504 Service Agreement[s]5 for the last trimester of 10th grade and for 11th grade and under inappropriate and /or not implemented IEP[s] for 12th grade. Further, the Parents also allege that the District discriminated against Student because of Student’s disability during the tryouts for a sports team.

The District maintains that it provided Student with FAPE at all relevant times and that it did not discriminate against Student during the team tryouts or at any other time.

The relevant period for this matter is from February 26, 2013 of Student’s tenth grade school year through Student’s graduation from the District in June 2015.

I find that the Student’s 504 Plans and IEPs were reasonably calculated to provide meaningful benefit, and that they were implemented. I also find that the District’s actions during the sports team tryouts were not discriminatory based on Student’s disability6 and did not violate section 504 or Chapter 15. Therefore, I must deny the Parents’ request for relief.

Issues

  1. Did the School District deny Student reasonable accommodations and thereby deny Student FAPE under Section 504 both in terms of the adequacy of the 504 Service Agreements and/or the implementation of the 504 Service Agreements7?
  2. Did the District deny Student FAPE by failing to identify Student as a Student eligible under IDEA in a timely fashion?
  3. Once identified as a Student eligible for special education under IDEA, was Student denied FAPE?
  4. If the District failed to offer Student FAPE what remedy is appropriate?
  5. Did the District discriminate against Student because of Student’s disability?
  6. If the District discriminated against Student, did that discrimination rise to the level of deliberate indifference or intentional discrimination?
M-D-Central-Bucks-ODRNo-15949-14-15-AS

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