SS vs. Bear Creek Community Charter School

Pennsylvania
Special Education Hearing Officer

DECISION
ODR No. 3101-1112 AS

Child’s Name: S.S.
Date of Birth: [redacted]
Dates of Hearing: 7/25/12, 8/1/12, 8/16/12

CLOSED HEARING

Parties to the Hearing:

Parents Parents

Charter School
Bear Creek Community Charter School 2000 Bear Creek Boulevard
Wilkes Barre, PA 18702

Representative:

Parent Attorney
Drew Christian, Esquire 801 Monroe Avenue Scranton, PA 18510

School District Attorney Rebecca Young, Esquire King, Spry
1 West Broad Street, Suite 700 Bethlehem, PA 18018

Date Record Closed: September 9, 20121

Date of Decision: September 16, 2012

Hearing Officer: Anne L. Carroll, Esq.

INTRODUCTION AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY

Student, enrolled in Bear Creek Community Charter School since kindergarten, was evaluated for special education services after Parents provided the School with a medical diagnosis of visual processing disorder and a privately obtained psycho-educational evaluation report that suggested a possible attention disorder and recommended continued academic support. Beginning in 1st grade, Student received regular education supports via the School’s Academic Support Program, with additional reading services added for a brief period early in 2nd grade.

Although the School’s evaluation resulted in the conclusion that Student was not IDEA eligible, Student was offered a §504 Service Agreement that included accommodations for the visual processing disorder and incorporated the services in the Academic Support Plan.

After reviewing the School’s evaluation report (ER) and comparing it with the results of the private report, Parents requested an independent educational evaluation (IEE), which the School refused, leading to the due process complaint and hearing sessions in July and August 2012. Because of questionable standardized assessment and rating scale results, as well as a flawed evaluation report that failed to address discrepancies in results between Parents’ privately obtained evaluation and the School’s results on the same assessments, the Charter School is ordered to provide Student with an IEE.

ISSUES

  1. Did the Bear Creek Community Charter School conduct an appropriate evaluation of Student, accurately compile and report the results and conclude that Student is not IDEA eligible?
  2. If not, is the Charter School required to fund an independent educational evaluation of Student?
S-S-Charter-School-ODRNo-3101-1112-AS

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