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Reauthorization of IDEA 2004 John Namkung Sonoma County SELPA May 20, 2005 Goal of the Presentation Summary of major changes in IDEA Definitions Highly Qualified Paperwork Reduction Private School Children Funding Overidentification and Disproportionality Early Intervening Services
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Reauthorization of IDEA 2004 John Namkung Sonoma County SELPA May 20, 2005
Goal of the Presentation • Summary of major changes in IDEA • Definitions • Highly Qualified • Paperwork Reduction • Private School Children • Funding • Overidentification and Disproportionality • Early Intervening Services • Medication
Goal of the Presentation • Participation in Assessments • Evaluations/Reevaluations • Specific Learning Disabilities • IEP Content • IEP Team Attendance • IEP Amendments • Multi-Year IEPs • Transfer Students
Goal of the Presentation • Discipline • Attorneys’ Fees • Mediation/Dispute Resolution • Federal and State Monitoring • Optional Birth through Six Program
It’s Not Over ‘til It’s Over • Regulations to Clarify the Statute • Proposed regulations in May • Public hearing on June 22 in Sacramento • Final regulations by December • Alignment of California Education Code to IDEA 2004 • California’s Participation in Pilot Programs • Clarification from CTC regarding “Highly Qualified” Special Education Teacher
Resources • NASDSE Side by Side • www.nasdse.org • $15.00 • No electronic version • Namkung Side by Side • www.scoe.org/selpa • Electronic version available • Free!
Resources • Congressional Research Service Report for Congress • www.cde.ca.gov • IDEA Guide to Frequently Asked Questions • http://edworkforce.house.gov • Department of Education Topical Briefs on IDEA 2004 • www.cec.sped.org/cec_bn/briefs.html
State Rulemaking Requirements • Each State must identify in writing to LEAs any rule, regulation or policy as a State-imposed requirement that is not required by the Act and regulations. • Each State must minimize the number of rules, regulations, and policies to which LEAs and schools are subject.
Definitions • Assistive Technology Device • Excludes a medical device that is surgically implanted, or the replacement of such device • Does not exclude “mapping” of a cochlear implant • Parent • Adds “other relative” with whom the child is living • Related Services • Interpreting services • School nurse services • Ward of the State
Definitions • Highly Qualified • Requirements for Special Education teachers • Full State certification • No waivers • Minimum of a bachelor’s degree • Special Education teachers teaching to alternative standards • Meet NCLB requirements for elementary, middle or secondary school teacher; or • Meet NCLB requirements for elementary teacher, or for instruction above elementary level, has appropriate subject matter knowledge as determined by the State.
Definitions • Special Education teachers teaching multiple subjects • May meet NCLB requirements for any elementary, middle or secondary teacher who is new or not new to the profession; or • For teachers not new--demonstrate competence under NCLB which may include a single HOUSSE covering multiple subjects • For new teachers--demonstrate competence in other core academic subjects under NCLB which may include a single HOUSSE covering multiple subjects not later than 2 years after employment
Definitions • Special Education teachers who provide consultative services to a highly qualified teacher • No right of action for failure to be highly qualified • No individual consequences for failure to be highly qualified • Consequences for LEAs • Related personnel and paraprofessionals
Paperwork Reduction Pilot Program • 15 states • California interested • Waivers not to exceed 4 years • No waiver of civil rights requirements • May not affect right of child to receive FAPE • No waiver of procedural safeguards • Annual report to Congress beginning in 2006 with specific recommendations • Real meaning of IDEA
Funding • LEA Risk Pool • State option to establish high cost fund • Innovative and effective ways of cost sharing • Development of a state plan • Definition of high need child • Cost is greater than 3 times the average per pupil expenditure • Eligibility criteria for LEA participation • Funding mechanism
Funding • Authorization of Appropriations (What happened to mandatory full funding?) • $12,358,376,571 in 2005 • $14,648,647,143 in 2006 • $16,938,917,714 in 2007 • $19,229,188,286 in 2008 • $21,519,458,857 in 2009 • $23,809,729,429 in 2010 • $26,100,000,000 in 2011 • Saturday night massacre • $10,589,746 appropriated for 2005
Funding • Prohibition on states to use federal funds for COLA and growth • Impact on Governor’s budget for 2005-2006
Children in Private Schools • Major change in responsibility of district where the private school is located • New reporting requirements to the state • Major changes in consultation process • Determination of proportionate share of federal funds • Consultation process throughout school year • Provision of services • Disagreement between LEA and private schools • Written affirmation by representatives of private schools
Children in Private Schools • Complaint procedures • Complaint by private school official • Response by LEA • Appeal to the Secretary of Education
Charter School Students • Requirement to provide services on charter school site to the same extent as the LEA provides services on site to its other public schools • Must a charter school create a specialized program for a child?
Early Intervening Services • An LEA may use up to 15% of federal funds for early intervening services • Target population is K-3 students not identified for special education who need academic and behavioral support • Annual reporting requirements • # of students served • # of students served who subsequently receive special education services during preceding 2-year period
Evaluation Timelines • 60-day timeline for completion of evaluations or within state timelines • California’s 50 day timeline and exceptions • Exceptions to timelines • If child enrolls in different LEA after start of the evaluation and the new LEA is making sufficient progress on completing the evaluation, and parent and new LEA agree to a timeline; or • Parent repeatedly fails or refuses to produce the child for an evaluation
Absence of Parental Consent • If parent refuses consent for services, LEA may not go to due process hearing to override non-consent. • Does not refer to initial services • If parent refuses services or fails to respond to request to provide consent, the LEA is not considered in violation of providing FAPE. • LEA is not required to convene IEP meeting or develop an IEP--doesn’t make sense.
Consent for Wards of the State • LEA must make reasonable efforts to obtain informed consent for wards of the State who don’t reside with parents. • No informed consent required for initial evaluation from parent-- • If parents can’t be located • Rights of parents have been terminated • Rights of parents to make educational decisions have been subrogated and consent has been given by an individual appointed by the judge
Screenings • Screening to determine appropriate instructional strategies for curriculum implementation shall not be considered to be an evaluation for eligibility for special education. • What is a screening? • Will a screening for an individual child be allowed? If so, parental notice is important.
Prohibition on Mandatory Medication • A child may not be required to obtain a prescription for medication as a condition of attending school, receiving an evaluation or receiving services under IDEA.
Reevaluations • Reevaluations shall occur-- • Not more frequently than once a year, unless parent and LEA agree otherwise. • At least once every 3 years, unless the parent and LEA agree that a reevaluation is unnecessary. • Will school districts be barred from conducting a reevaluation if needed when a parent is threatening litigation and the school district has conducted an evaluation within the past year?
Assessments for Transfer Students • Assessments for students who transfer from one school district to another within same year must be completed as expeditiously as possible.
Eligibility Determination • A child may not be determined to be a child with a disability if the determinant factor is lack of appropriate instruction in reading, including the essential components of reading instruction as defined in NCLB.
Specific Learning Disabilities • In determining whether a child has SLD, an LEA shall not be required to consider whether the child has a severe discrepancy between achievement and intellectual ability. • An LEA may use a response to research-based intervention as part of the evaluation process.
Evaluations Before Change in Eligibility • Evaluation required before determining a child is no longer a child with a disability. • Exceptions-- • Evaluation not required before graduation with a diploma or before aging out of special education. • In such cases, an LEA shall provide the child with a summary of the child’s academic and functional performance, including recommendations on how to assist the child to meet postsecondary goals.
Contents of IEP • Benchmarks or short-term objectives only required for students who take alternate assessments aligned to alternate achievement standards • How about preschool children? • Progress reports toward meeting annual goals clarified. • Concurrent with the issuance of report cards.
Contents of IEP • Statement of services, based on peer-reviewed research to the extent practicable. • Statement of transition services beginning at age 14 is changed to age 16. • Nothing in IDEA shall be construed to require that additional information be included in an IEP beyond what is explicitly required in the law.
IEP Team Attendance • A member of the IEP team is not required to attend in whole or in part-- • If the parent and the LEA agree that his/her attendance is not necessary because the member’s area of curriculum or related service is not being modified or discussed at the meeting. • Parent’s agreement must be in writing.
IEP Team Attendance • A member of the IEP team may be excused when the meeting involves a modification to or discussion of the member’s area of curriculum or related service if-- • The parent and the LEA agree. Parent consent must be in writing. • The members submits written input into the development of the IEP. • Invitation to the initial IEP meeting must be sent, at parent request, to the part C coordinator or representative.
Transfer Students • Within the same state • LEA must provide comparable services, in consultation with the parents until the new LEA adopts the previous IEP, or develops and implements a new IEP. • Transfer outside the state • LEA must provide comparable services, in consultation with the parents until the new LEA conducts an evaluation, if necessary, and develops a new IEP, if appropriate.
Transfer Students • Transmittal of records • New school must take reasonable steps to promptly obtain school records from the previous school. • Previous school must take reasonable steps to promptly respond to request for records.
Changes to the IEP • In making changes to the IEP after the annual IEP, the parents and LEA may agree not to convene an IEP meeting to make the changes, and instead may develop a written document to amend or modify the IEP. • Include the process for reaching agreement. • Changes may be made by amending the IEP rather than redrafting the entire IEP. Upon request, the parent shall be given a revised copy of the IEP with the amendments incorporated.
Multi-Year IEP Pilot Program • 15 states may be authorized • Multi-year IEP not to exceed 3 years and designed to coincide with natural transition points • Periods close in time to transition from preschool to elementary, elementary to middle school, middle to secondary school, secondary school to post-secondary activities • Optional for parents • Parent consent is required
Multi-Year IEP Pilot Program • Content of multi-year IEP • Measurable goals coinciding with natural transition points • Measurable annual goals for determining progress • Description of process for review and revision of each multi-year IEP
Multi-Year IEP Pilot Program • Review of multi-year IEP • At each natural transition point • In other years, an annual review of the IEP to determine level of progress • If child is not making sufficient progress, the IEP team must carry out a more thorough review of the IEP within 30 calendar days. • At parent request, the IEP team must conduct a review of the multi-year IEP rather than or subsequent to an annual review. • Will California submit a proposal?
Alternative IEP Meeting Participation • Parents and LEA may agree to alternative means of meeting participation, such as video conferences and conference calls for- • IEP team meetings • Placement meetings • Meetings to carry out administrative matters (scheduling, exchange of witness lists, and status conferences)
Due Process Complaints • 2-year statute of limitations for due process hearing request or filing of complaint • California has 3-year statute of limitations • Clarification regarding LEA requirement to provide due process complaint notice to parents
Due Process Complaints • Due process complaint notice deemed sufficient unless the party receiving the notice notifies the hearing officer and the other party that the notice has not meet the requirements. • Notice to hearing officer must be provided within 15 days of receiving the complaint. • Within 5 days of receipt of the notification, the hearing officer must make a determination and notify the parties in writing.
Due Process Complaints • If the LEA has not sent a prior written notice regarding the subject of the hearing request, it must do so within 10 days of receiving the complaint. • Non-complaining party must send to the complainant a response that specifically addresses the issues raised in the complaint within 10 days, except as provided above.
Due Process Complaints • A party may amend the due process complaint only if-- • The other party consents in writing and is given the opportunity to resolve the complaint through a resolution session; or • The hearing officer grants permission, except he/she may only grant permission at any time not later than 5 days before the due process hearing.
Procedural Safeguards Notice • Copy of procedural safeguards notice to be given to parents only one time a year, except a copy must be given-- • Upon initial referral or parental request for evaluation • Upon the first filing of a due process complaint • Upon request by the parent. • Give to all current parents, effective July 1, 2005 • LEA may place procedural safeguards notice on its internet website.
Procedural Safeguards Notice • Procedural safeguards notice must include-- • Time period in which to make due process complaints • The opportunity for the LEA to resolve the complaint • Time periods in which to file civil actions • Electronic mail--Parents may elect to receive any notices required under the procedural safeguards section of IDEA by e-mail, if the LEA makes such option available.
Mediation Agreements • In cases of a resolution of a dispute through mediation, the parties must execute a legally binding agreement that-- • Is signed by both parties • Is enforceable in any State or district court • States that all discussion is confidential and may not be used as evidence in any subsequent hearing or civil proceeding
Resolution Session • Prior to a due process hearing, the LEA must convene a meeting of parents and relevant member(s) of the IEP team-- • Within 15 days of receiving the notice of the parents’ complaint • Must include an LEA representative with decision making authority • May not include an LEA attorney unless the parent brings an attorney
Resolution Session • The LEA is given the opportunity to resolve the complaint • The meeting is not required if the parents and the LEA agree in writing to waive the meeting or agree to use a separate mediation process. • If there is no resolution of the complaint within 30 days of the receipt of the complaint, the due process hearing may occur. • If resolved, a written settlement agreement must be executed. • No mention of confidentiality of meeting • Either party may void the agreement with 3 business days