RJ vs. School District of Philadelphia

Pennsylvania
Special Education Hearing Officer

DECISION

Student’s Name: R.J.

Date of Birth: [redacted]

ODR No. 2861-11-12-KE

OPEN HEARING

Parties to the Hearing: Parents

School District of Philadelphia 440 North Broad Street, Su. 313 Philadelphia, PA 19130

Representative:

Benjamin D. Geffen, Esquire Kate W. Ericsson, Esquire Public Interest Law Center of Philadelphia

1709 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy, 2d Fl. Philadelphia, Pa 19103

Brian E. Subers, Esquire Fox, Rothschild, LLP
10 Sentry Parkway, Su. 200 P.O. Box 3001
Blue Bell, PA 19422-3001

Dates of Hearing: March 28, 2012, May 14, 2012, May 31, 2012, June 13, 2012

Record Closed: July 3, 2012

Date of Decision: July 12, 2012

Hearing Officer: William F. Culleton, Jr., Esq., CHO

INTRODUCTION AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY

The Student named in the title page of this decision (Student) is an eligible resident of the school district named in the title page of this decision (District). (NT 12-13.) The District has identified Student with Multiple Disabilities. (NT 12.) Parents assert that the District has failed to provide the Student with a free appropriate public education (FAPE), in the least restrictive environment to the maximum extent appropriate, as required by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 20 U.S.C. §1401 et seq. (IDEA). Parents seek an order to include Student in regular education to a greater extent, and to provide different assistive technology, as well as compensatory education for a period beginning on February 14, 20101 and ending on the day of the last hearing session, June 13, 2012. (NT 297-307.) The District asserts that it has provided a meaningful educational benefit in the least restrictive environment appropriate to Student’s needs at all times.

The hearing was concluded in five sessions. The parties submitted written summations, and the record closed upon receipt of those summations.

ISSUES

  1. Did the District fail to educate Student in the least restrictive environment to the maximum extent appropriate during the relevant time, February 14, 2010 to June 13, 2012?
  2. Did the District, during the relevant period, deprive Student of a FAPE by failing to provide appropriate assistive technology?
R-J-School-District-of-Philadelphia-ODRNo-2861-11-12-KE

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