Special Education Hearing Officer
Child’s Name: TE
Date of Birth: xx/xx/xx
Dates of Hearing: April 2, 2008; May 6, 2008
ODR #8498/07-08 KE
Parties to the Hearing: Mr. and Ms.
Pottsville Area School District 1501 West Laurel Boulevard Pottsville, PA 17901-1498
Phillip A. Drumheiser, Esquire P.O. Box 890
Carlisle, PA 17013
Jeffrey F. Champagne, Esquire McNees, Wallace & Nurick LLP 100 Pine Street
P.O. Box 1166
Harrisburg, PA 17108-1166
Date Record Closed: May 9, 2008
Date of Decision: May 24, 2008
Hearing Officer: William F. Culleton, Jr., Esquire
INTRODUCTION AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
Student is a xx year old resident of the Pottsville Area School District (District), and he is not currently identified as a child with a disability for special education purposes. (NT 10.) The Student is in sixth grade. (P-2.) He has been diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. (P-7 p. 1.) Mr. and Ms. (Parents) request due process, asserting that the District failed to identify the Student as a child with a disability from his kindergarten year until the date of filing for due process, that the District’s evaluation of January 2008 was inappropriate, and that the program and placement that the District offered to the Student was and is inadequate. They seek an order for an Independent Educational Evaluation and compensatory education.
The parties agreed and the hearing officer directed that the matter be bifurcated and that the present hearing and decision be limited to the issues surrounding the Parents’ request for an independent educational evaluation. (NT 25-26.) The District argued that it had performed a comprehensive evaluation of the disability that the Parents had asked it to address: Other Health Impairment. In addition, the District had performed a less comprehensive evaluation of other possible disabilities in order to “screen” for them, but found no reason to continue with more detailed testing or analysis. Thus, the District argues that its evaluation was appropriate and that the request for independent educational evaluation should be denied.
The Parents requested an evaluation in November 2007, (P-1), and the District completed the evaluation by January 18, 2008, (P-7). The Parents next requested an independent educational evaluation and conveyed this request on or about January 24, 2008. (P-10.) By letter dated January 27, 2008, the Parents requested due process. (P-13.) The hearing was conducted on two days, April 2, 2008 and May 6, 2008. The record closed on May 9, 2008, upon receipt of the last transcript.
1. Was the District’s evaluation, as reported in the Evaluation Report dated January 18, 2008, appropriate?
2. Should the hearing officer order an independent educational evaluation at public expense?TE-Pottsville-Area-ODRNo-8498-07-08-KE