Friday, July 06, 2007

The Multidisciplinary Evaluation Team (VI)

C. Rights of parents and students - Students with disabilities and their parents are guaranteed due process rights in determining special education eligibility, evaluation of their child, placement in the LRE, and provision of a free appropriate public education (FAPE). A copy of the procedural safeguards must be made available to the parents of a child with a disability upon:(a) initial referral for an evaluation; (b) upon each notification of an individualized education program meeting; (c) upon reevaluation of the child; and (d) upon registration of a complaint.

Procedural safeguards include:

· independent educational evaluation
· prior written notice
· parental consent
· access to educational records
· opportunity to present complaints
· the child’s placement during pendency of due process proceedings
· procedures for students who are subject to placement in an interim alternative educational setting;
· requirements for unilateral placement by parents of children in private schools at public expense;
· mediation (a system in which parents and schools may voluntarily participate);
· due process hearings, including requirements for disclosure of evaluation results and recommendations;
· state-level appeals
· civil actions; and
· attorneys’ fees

Note: Policies and procedures on such things as time lines for assessment, eligibility determination and placement, composition of educational teams, procedures for parental notice and consent, and the process for examination of student records may vary from state to state. It is important to know Tennessee’s regulations.

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