MD vs. Downingtown Area School District




Name of Child: M.D.

ODR #1530/10-11-AS

Date of Birth: [redacted]

Dates of Hearing: May 9, 2011 May 16, 2011 June 24, 2011


Parties to the Hearing: Parent[s]

Downingtown Area School District 540 Trestle Place
Downingtown, PA 19335

Donald Litman, Esquire PO Box 35
Lansdale, PA 19446

Andrew Faust, Esquire
Sweet, Stevens, Katz & Williams 331 Butler Avenue PO Box 5069 New Britain, PA 18901

Date Record Closed: July 9, 2011

Date of Decision: July 27, 2011

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


Student1 is an elementary-school-aged learning disabled eligible student enrolled in the Downingtown Area School District (District). Student’s Parents (Parents) requested this hearing, alleging that the District failed to offer Student a free appropriate public education (FAPE) and seeking compensatory education as well as reimbursement for privately obtained evaluations. The District asserts that it has in all respects provided FAPE to Student and that neither compensatory education nor reimbursement is due. For the reasons presented below I find for the parents on several but not all issues.


  1. Did the District deny Student FAPE during the 2009-2010 school year by virtue


    1. Failing to identify all areas of educational need and strengths; and/or2
    2. Failing to address all areas of need through research-based intervention;


    3. Failing to deliver intervention in the intensity required; and/or
    4. Failing to deliver interventions with fidelity?

      Did Student fail to make meaningful educational progress due to the alleged denial of FAPE? If so, is Student entitled to compensatory education? If so, in what kind and in what amount?

  2. Did the district deny Student FAPE during the 2010 2011 school year by virtue of:
    1. Failing to provide sufficient speech language, occupational therapy, sensory integration3, and behavioral support services; and/or
    2. Failing to obtain baselines, fashion concrete measurable goals and provide appropriate SDI in the areas of reading, OT/SI4 and behavior; and/or
    3. Failing to implement the IEP; and/or
    4. Failing to consider the Student’s educational needs and recommendations

      for addressing these needs in the ER and in the IEP as put forth in the independent evaluation of April 23, 2010?

      Did Student fail to make meaningful educational progress due to alleged denial of FAPE? If so, is Student entitled to compensatory education? If so, in what kind and in what amount?

  3. Did the District deny the Parents meaningful participation in Student’s educational programming in 2009/2010 and in 2010/2011 by virtue of:
    1. Failing to provide verifiable data; and/or
    2. Failing to allow the Parents to conduct progress monitoring;5 and/or
    3. Misleading the Parents and/or otherwise providing false data; and/or
    4. Predetermining Student’s educational programming in preparing/issuing

      the 2011 IEP and NOREP outside the IEP process?

    4. Should the District be required to reimburse the Parents for various6 independent evaluations privately obtained in 2010?


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