MD vs. School District Downingtown Area

Special Education Hearing Officer

ODR No. 13126-1213 KE

Child’s Name: M.D.
Date of Birth: [redacted]
Dates of Hearing: 4/8/13, 4/24/13, 5/1/13, 5/22/13


Parties to the Hearing:

Parents Parents

School District Downingtown Area
540 Trestle Place Downingtown, PA 19335


Parent Attorney
Lorrie McKinley, Esquire McKinley & Ryan, LLC 16 West Market Street West Chester, PA 19382

School District Attorney
Andrew Faust, Esquire
Sweet, Stevens, Katz & Williams 331 Butler Avenue, P.O. Box 5069 New Britain, PA 18901

Date Record Closed: May 22, 2013

Date of Decision: June 12, 2013

Hearing Officer: Anne L. Carroll, Esq.


Student, who is IDEA eligible due to a specific learning disability in reading, resides within the boundaries of the School District. For the past two years, however, Student was enrolled in a private school selected by Parents, who initiated the complaint in this case to obtain tuition reimbursement for the 2011/2012 and 2012/2013 school years. Parents are also requesting reimbursement for an independent educational evaluation (IEE) they obtained in the spring of 2012.

After a settlement was reported in February 2013, the case was provisionally closed for 60 days. Because a final agreement was not satisfactorily completed, however, the case was reinstated at Parents’ request and proceeded to a hearing, which was conducted over 4 sessions in April and May 2013. For the reasons explained below, Parents claims are denied.


  1. Did the School District offer an appropriate IEP to Student for the fifth grade (2011/2012 school year?
  2. Did the School District offer an appropriate IEP in accordance with all procedural and substantive requirements for the sixth grade (2012/2013) school year?
  3. If not, are Parents entitled to tuition reimbursement for the fifth grade and/or sixth grade school year?
  4. Should the District be required to reimburse the Parents for an IEE that they obtained during the summer of 2012?

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