OZ vs. School District Kutztown Area

Pennsylvania
Special Education Hearing Officer

DECISION
ODR No. 1899-1011KE

Child’s Name: O.Z.
Date of Birth: [redacted]
Dates of Hearing: 9/22/11, 9/28/11, 11/10/11, 11/15/11, 12/2/11, 12/19/11, 1/4/12, 1/10/12

CLOSED HEARING

Parties to the Hearing: Parents

School District Kutztown Area 251 Long Lane

Kutztown, PA 19530

Representative:

Parent Attorney
Jennifer Bradley, Esquire McAndrews Law Offices 30 Cassatt Avenue Berwyn, PA 19312

School District Attorney
Glenna Hazeltine, Esquire
King, Spry
One West Broad Street Suite 700 Bethlehem, PA 18018

Date Record Closed: February 20, 2012

Date of Decision: March 11, 2012

Hearing Officer: Anne L. Carroll, Esq.

INTRODUCTION AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY

Student entered the District in kindergarten with several diagnoses and disorders that adversely affected school functioning due to deficits in language, pre-academic and motor skills. The Student’s conditions and functional difficulties created complex educational needs. After first diagnosing Student with other health impairment and learning disabilities before kindergarten, the District changed Student’s disability category to MR following a reevaluation in the winter of 2011.1

Dissatisfied with Student’s academic progress and in disagreement with the change in disability category, Parents enrolled Student in a cyber charter school for the current school year and filed a due process complaint in June 2011 seeking compensatory education for the District’s alleged failure to provide Student with a free, appropriate public education (FAPE). The hearing began in September 2011 and continued through eight sessions, ending in January 2012. For the reasons explained below, Student will be awarded compensatory education for the 2009/2010 and 2010/2011 school years, as well as for ESY services for the summers of 2009, 2010 and 2011.

ISSUES

  1. Did the School District appropriately evaluate Student and appropriately identify Student’s disability category or categories?
  2. Did the School District offer Student appropriate special education services during the 2009/2010 and 2010/2011 school years and during the summers of 2009, 2010 and 2011?
  3. Is Student entitled to an award of compensatory education, and if so, for what period, in what amount and in what form?
O-Z-Kutztown-Area-ODRNo-1899-1011KE-

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