Special Education Procedures

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Livingston County Special Services Unit

Special Education Procedures Assuring
the Implementation of Comprehensive Programming for Children with Disabilities

This document is designed to maintain Livingston
County Special Services Unit compliance with the Illinois State Board of
Education’s requirements for procedures announced in January 2001, as required
by 34 C.F.R. § 300.220, 20 U.S.C. § 1413(a)(1).

All Livingston County Special Services Unit’s member
districts are in compliance by adhering to these policies and procedures.

Section
1.         Free Appropriate Public
Education and Comprehensive Programs

Section
2.         Full Education Opportunity Goal

Section
3.         Confidentiality of Personally
Identifiable Information

Section
4.         Child Identification/Child Find

Section
5.         Evaluation and Determination of
Eligibility

Section
6.         Individualized Education
Programs

Section
7.         Least Restrictive Environment

Section
8.         Transition of Children from
Part C to Preschool Programs

Section
9.         Nonpublic Special Education
Programs/Facilities and Private Schools

Section
10.       Procedural Safeguards

Section
11.       Personnel Development

Section 12.       Supplementation
of State, Local and Other Federal Funds; Maintenance of Efforts; Use of Part B;
Excess Cost; Permissive Use of Funds; Treatment of Charter Schools

Section
13.       Behavioral Intervention and
Discipline

Section
14.       Extended School Year Services

Section 15.       Policy
and Procedures Development

 

1st Reading –
LCSSU Administrative Board – August 27, 2001

Approved by Illinois State
Board of Education – September 25, 2001

2nd Reading –
LCSSU Administrative Board – October 22, 2001

 

Section 1. Free Appropriate Public Education and
Comprehensive Programs

  1. Comprehensive Program

Livingston County
Special Services Unit (LCSSU) provides and maintains appropriate and effective
educational programs in order to afford every child with a disability who is
between the ages of 3 and 21, is enrolled in
a member School District, and requires special education and related
services to address the adverse effect of the disability on his/her education
(including transfer children and children who have been suspended or expelled
from school) a free appropriate public education (FAPE) as permitted under
current state and federal laws.  As part
of this effort, the member School District provides all eligible children who
are residents of the member  School
District with a comprehensive program of special education, which includes the
following:

  1. A viable organizational and financial structure;
    1. Systematic procedures for identifying and
      evaluating the need for special education and related services;
    2. A continuum of appropriate alternative
      placements available to meet the needs of children for special education and
      related services which may include, but is not limited to, any of the
      following:

      1. Regular
        classes;
      2. Special
        classes;
      3. Special
        schools;
      4. Home/hospital
        services; and
      5. State
        operated or nonpublic programs.
      6. Qualified personnel who are employed in
        sufficient number to provide:

a.   Supervisory services;

b.   Instructional and resource services;

c.   Related services; and

d.   Transportation services.

  1. Appropriate and adequate facilities, equipment
    and materials;
  2. Functional relationships with public and private
    agencies that can supplement or enhance the special education services of the
    public schools;
  3. Interaction with parent(s)/guardian(s) and other
    concerned persons that facilitates the educational development of children with
    disabilities;
  4. Procedures for internal evaluation of the
    special education services provided; and
  5. Continuous planning for program growth and
    improvement based on internal and external evaluation.
  6. Public Awareness

LCSSU shall create
public awareness of special education and related services and advise the
public of the rights of children with disabilities pursuant to LCSSU developed
procedures.  In creating public awareness
of special education and related services and advising the public of the rights
of children with disabilities, LCSSU shall comply with the following:

  1. Information provided to the public shall be made
    available in each of the major languages represented in the School District and
    in the language that will be understandable to parent(s)/guardian(s),
    regardless of ethnic or cultural background or hearing or visual abilities;
  2. Annual notification shall be provided to all
    parent(s)/guardian(s) in the member School District regarding the special
    education services available in or through LCSSU and of their right to receive
    a copy of § 226.50 of the ISBE regulations upon request;
  3. Annual dissemination of information to the
    community served by LCSSU regarding the special education services available in
    or through the member  School District
    and the rights of children with disabilities;
  4. Documentation, including examples as
    appropriate, of LCSSU’s efforts in this regard shall be maintained in LCSSU’s
    files.
  5. Providing Free Appropriate Public Education

Each member School
District will provide a free appropriate public education (FAPE) to all
children with disabilities between the ages of 3 and 21, including children
with disabilities who have been suspended or expelled from school for more than
10 consecutive school days during the school year, or who receive a series of
removals that constitute a change in placement.
In order to meet the requirements of a free appropriate public
education, the member School District shall comply with the following:

  1. All children, ages birth through 21, who are
    suspected of having a disability, which adversely affects educational
    performance, are identified, located and evaluated in accordance with the Child
    Identification procedures set forth in § 226.100 of the ISBE Regulations.
  2. The special education and related services shall
    be provided according to the child’s individualized education program (IEP),
    which shall be developed in accordance with these procedures, at no cost to the
    parent.  The IEP shall specify the
    special education and related services needed in order to ensure that the child
    receives FAPE, including any extended school year services, if appropriate.
  3. FAPE shall be made available to all eligible
    children with disabilities no later than the child’s third birthday.
  4. The special education services and placement
    that constitute FAPE for a particular child shall be identified based on the
    child’s unique needs and not on the child’s category of disability.  These services shall address all of the
    child’s identified needs for special education and related services.
  5. The special education and related services shall
    be provided to an eligible child even though the child is advancing from grade
    to grade.
  6. The member School District shall provide
    nonacademic and extracurricular services and activities in a manner necessary
    to afford children with disabilities an equal opportunity to participate in
    those services and activities.
  7. No delay shall occur in implementing a child’s
    IEP, including any case in which the source of payment or provision of services
    to the child is being determined.
  8. No eligible child from 3 through 21 years of age
    may be permanently excluded from the public schools, either by direct action by
    the board of education, by indication of the member School District’s inability
    to provide an educational program, or by informal agreement between the
    parent(s)/guardian(s) and the member School District to allow the child to
    remain without an educational program.
  9. The School District need not provide a child
    with services during periods in which the child has been removed from his/her
    current placement for 10 school days or fewer in a particular school year, if
    services are not provided to a child without disabilities who has been similarly
    removed.  However, an eligible child who
    has been suspended or expelled from school for more than 10 school days during
    a particular school year shall continue to receive services necessary to enable
    the child to appropriately progress in the general curriculum and appropriately
    advance toward achieving the goals set out in the child’s IEP.
  10. If a child with a disability who is receiving
    special education from a member School District transfers to another member
    School District, the receiving School District shall ensure that the child
    receives FAPE in conformity with the child’s IEP.  If the receiving member School District is
    unable to obtain a copy of the child’s current IEP or a verbal confirmation of
    the requirements of the IEP from the previous School District, the child shall
    be enrolled and served in the setting that the School District believes will
    meet the child’s needs until a copy of the current IEP is obtained or a new IEP
    is developed by the School District.  In
    no case shall a child be allowed to remain without services during this interim
    period.
  11. In providing FAPE to children with disabilities
    who have been suspended or expelled from school, the member School District
    shall meet the requirements set forth in Subpart E of the ISBE Regulations.
  12. Any child for whom services are sought shall not
    be denied FAPE regardless of any jurisdictional disputes among Illinois
    agencies.
  13. Exceptions to Providing FAPE
    1. A child with a disability who has graduated with
      a regular high school diploma or its equivalent shall not be provided
      FAPE.  Children with disabilities who
      receive something other than a standard diploma shall remain eligible for FAPE
      until the child reaches the age of 21.
      Children who become 21 during the school year shall be allowed to
      complete that year.
    2. Any child 18 through 21 years of age who is
      incarcerated and who is not identified as eligible and did not have an IEP in
      his/her educational placement immediately prior to incarceration shall not be
      provided FAPE.

LEGAL REF.:      20 U.S.C. §§ 1412
(State eligibility), 1413 (local educational agency eligibility).

34 C.F.R. §§ 300.121 (free appropriate public
education–FAPE), 300.122 (exception to FAPE for certain ages), 300.300
(provision of FAPE), 300.301 (FAPE-methods and payments), 300.309 (extended
school year services).

105 ILCS 5/14-1.02 (children with disabilities).

23 Ill. Admin. Code §§ 226.50 (requirements for a
FAPE), 226.700 (general).

Section 2. Full Educational Opportunity Goal

  1. Establishment of the Goal

LCSSU has
established a goal of providing full educational opportunity to children with
disabilities aged birth through 21.
Attainment of the full educational opportunity goal for children, ages
birth through 2, will be accomplished through full participation in, and full
implementation of the “Infants and Toddlers with Disabilities Act.”

  1. Annual Data Collection Requirements
    1. LCSSU shall annually collect the following
      information regarding children with disabilities residing within the
      jurisdiction of the School District:

      1. The
        number of children with disabilities, by race, ethnicity, and disability
        category, who are receiving a free appropriate public education;
      2. The
        number of children with disabilities, by race and ethnicity, who are receiving
        early intervention services;
      3. The
        number of children with disabilities, by race, ethnicity, and disability
        category, who are participating in regular education;
      4. The
        number of children with disabilities, by race, ethnicity, and disability
        category, who are in separate classes, separate schools or facilities, or
        public or private residential facilities;
      5. The
        number of children with disability, by race, ethnicity, and disability
        category, who, for each year of age from age 14 to 21, stopped receiving
        special education and related services because of program completion or other
        reasons and the reasons why those children stopped receiving special education
        and related services;
      6. The
        number of children with disabilities, by race and ethnicity, who from birth
        through age 2, stopped receiving early intervention services because of program
        completion or for other reasons;
      7. The
        number of children with disabilities, by race, ethnicity, and disability
        category, who under subparagraphs (A)(ii) and (B) of § 1415(k)(1) of IDEA, are
        removed to an interim alternative educational setting; the acts or items
        precipitating those removals; and the number of children with disabilities who
        are subject to long-term suspensions or expulsions;
      8. The
        number of special education teachers;
      9. The number of related services personnel;
      10. The cost of all personnel;
      11. The
        number of children receiving special education transportation;
      12. The types of alternative placements available
        for children with disabilities; and
      13. The
        number of children served in each type of placement.
      14. LCSSU shall also annually collect information
        regarding the facilities, personnel and services necessary to accomplish the
        full educational opportunity goal.

LEGAL REF.:      20 U.S.C. §§ 1412
(State eligibility), 1413 (local educational agency eligibility), 1418 (program
information).

34 C.F.R. §§ 300.123 (full educational opportunity
goal-FEOG), 300.124 (FEOG-timetable), 300.125 (child find).

23 Ill. Admin. Code §§ 226.700 (general), 226.760
(evaluation of special education), 226.800 (personnel required to be
qualified).

 

Section 3. Confidentiality of Personally Identifiable
Information

  1. Confidentiality
    1. The school student records of a child with
      disabilities shall be maintained confidentially in accordance with the
      requirements of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, the Family
      Educational Rights and Privacy Act, The Illinois School Student Records Act,
      the Illinois School Code, the Illinois Mental Health and Developmental
      Disabilities Confidentiality Act, and their respective implementing
      regulations.
    2. LCSSU shall designate a Records Custodian to
      take all reasonable measures to comply with the confidentiality requirements of
      the Illinois School Code, Illinois School Student Records Act, the Illinois
      Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities Act, Individuals with Disabilities
      Education Act, and Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, and their
      respective implementing regulations.
    3. The Records Custodian shall assume
      responsibility for the following:

      1. Respond
        to any request for inspection and review of school student records, including a
        request for a copy of school student records;
      2. Respond
        to any request for an explanation or interpretation of a school student record;
      3. Respond
        to any request to amend or destroy a school student record;
      4. Respond
        to any request to disclose or release personally identifiable information
        and/or school student records;
      5. Keep
        a record of parties obtaining access to school student records including the
        name of the party, the date access took place, and the purpose of the
        authorized use;
      6. Maintain,
        for public inspection, a current listing of the names and positions of the
        employees who may have access to personally identifiable information;
      7. Provide
        upon request from the parent(s)/guardian(s) or the child at the age of
        majority, a list of the types and locations of school student records
        collected, maintained, or used by LCSSU ;
      8. Take
        all reasonable measures to protect the confidentiality of personally
        identifiable information at collection, storage, disclosure, and destruction
        stages of maintenance of school student records.
      9. The school principal, person with like duties,
        or principal’s designee, shall take all action necessary to assure that each
        person collecting or using personally identifiable information receives
        training or instruction regarding the policies and procedures governing
        confidentiality of personally identifiable information.
      10. Each member School District will notify the
        parent(s)/guardian(s) or the child with disabilities at the age of majority of
        the right to access the school student records, to request amendments and to
        request a records hearing:

        1. The
          school will notify annually the child and the student’s parent(s) if the child
          is under the age of majority, of their rights under the federal and State law
          with respect to access including, but not limited to, the following:

(1)    The
types and location of information contained in the permanent and temporary
school student records;

(2)      The
right to inspect and copy permanent and temporary school student records and
the cost of copying such records;

(3)      The
right to control access to and release of school student records and the right
to request a copy of information released;

(4)      The
rights and procedures for challenging the contents of school student records
that may be inaccurate, misleading or improper;

(5)      The
persons, agencies or organizations having access to the school student records
without parental consent;

(6)      The
right to copy any school student record or information contained therein which
is proposed to be destroyed or deleted and the school’s schedule for reviewing
and destroying such information;

(7)      The
categories of information the school has designated as “directory
information” and the right of the parent(s)/guardian(s) to prohibit the
release of such information.

  1. Notice
    will be delivered by the means most likely to reach the parent(s)/guardian(s)
    or the child at the age of majority, including direct mail, parent-teacher
    conferences, delivery by the child to the parent, or incorporated in a
    “parent-student” handbook or other informational brochure for
    children and parent(s)/guardian(s) disseminated by the school.
  2. Type of Records Subject to Disclosure
    1. School student records available for review by
      parent(s)/guardian(s) or authorized persons are those writings or other
      recorded information concerning a child and by which a child may be
      individually identified, maintained by a school or at its direction or by an
      employee of a school, regardless of how or where the information is
      stored.  The following are not school
      student records and are not subject to disclosure:  Writings or other recorded information
      maintained by an employee of the member School District or other person at the
      direction of the School District for his/her exclusive use, provided that all
      such writings and other recorded information are destroyed not later than the
      student’s graduation or permanent withdrawal from the school, and provided
      further that no such records or recorded information may be released or
      disclosed to any person except a person designated by the school as a
      substitute unless they are first incorporated in a school student record and
      made subject to all of the provisions of federal and State law.
    2. School student records do not include
      information maintained by law enforcement professionals working in the school.
  3. Inspection and Review of School Student Records
    1. The member School District shall permit
      parent(s)/guardian(s) and any other authorized persons the opportunity to
      inspect, review, and copy all school student records.
    2. The Records Custodian shall respond to and grant
      any written request to inspect and to copy school student records to a
      parent(s)/guardian(s) or authorized representative within 15 school days after
      the date of receipt of such written request by the Records Custodian.
    3. If requested by an authorized person, the
      Records Custodian shall provide a copy of the school student record if he/she
      determines that the parent(s)/guardian(s) will be effectively prevented from
      exercising his/her right to inspect and review school student records at the
      location where such records are normally maintained (or at any other location
      where the School District offers to produce such records). The School District
      may charge a reasonable fee for copies of records. The School District shall
      not charge a fee when the Records Custodian determines that, a
      parent(s)/guardian(s) is to bear the cost of such copying.
  4. Release of Personally Identifiable Information
    1. The School District shall obtain written
      parental consent or consent from the child at age of majority before permitting
      personally identifiable information to be released or used except as otherwise
      authorized by law.
    2. The School District may not release, transfer,
      disclose or otherwise disseminate information maintained in the school student
      record, except as follows and as provided by law:

      1. To
        a parent(s)/guardian(s) or child or person specifically designated as a
        representative by a parent, or;
      2. To
        an employee or official of the school or LCSSU or State Board of Education with
        current demonstrable educational or administrative interest in the student, in
        furtherance of such interest.
      3. To
        the official records custodian of another school within Illinois or an official
        with similar responsibilities of a school outside Illinois, in which the child
        has enrolled, or intends to enroll, upon the request of such official or
        student.
      4. To
        any person for the purpose of research, statistical reporting or planning,
        provided that no child or parent(s)/guardian(s) can be identified from the
        information released, and the person to whom the information is released signs
        an affidavit agreeing to comply with all applicable statutes and rules
        pertaining to school student records.
      5. Pursuant
        to a court order, provided that the parent(s)/guardian(s) shall be given prompt
        written notice upon receipt of such order of the terms of the order, the nature
        and substance of the information proposed to be released in compliance with
        such order and an opportunity to inspect and copy the school student records
        and to challenge their contents.
      6. To
        any person as specifically required by State or federal law.
      7. To
        juvenile authorities when necessary for the discharge of their official duties
        who request information prior to adjudication of the child and who certify in
        writing that the information will not be disclosed to any other party except as
        provided under law or order of the court. For purposes of this Section, a
        juvenile authority means:

(1)   A
judge of the circuit court and members of the staff of the court designated by
the judge;

(2)   Parties
to the proceedings under the Juvenile Court Act of 1987 and their attorneys;

(3)   Probation
officers and court-appointed advocates for the juvenile authorized by the judge
hearing the case;

(4)   Any
individual, public or private agency having custody of the child pursuant to court
order;

(5)   Any
individual, public or private agency providing education, medical or mental
health service to the child when the requested information is needed to
determine the appropriate service or treatment for the minor;

(6)   Any
potential placement provider when such release is authorized by the court for
the limited purpose of determining the appropriateness of the potential
placement;

(7)   Law
enforcement officers and prosecutors;

(8)   Adult
and juvenile prisoner review boards;

(9)   Authorized
military personnel;

(10)     Individuals
authorized by court.

  1. Subject
    to regulations of the State Board, in connection with an emergency, to
    appropriate persons if the knowledge of such information is necessary to
    protect the health or safety of the child or other persons.

i.    To any
person, with the prior specific-dated written consent of the
parent(s)/guardian(s) designating the person to whom the records may be
released, provided that at the time any such consent is requested or obtained,
the parent(s)/guardian(s) shall be advised in writing that he has the right to
inspect and copy such records, to challenge their contents, and to limit any
such consent to designated records or designated portions of the information
contained therein, as provided by law and as described herein.

  1. Transfer of Records
    1. The member School District shall forward, within
      10 days of receipt of notice of the student’s transfer to any other private or
      public elementary or secondary school located in this or any other state, a
      copy of the student’s unofficial record of the student’s grades to the school
      to which the child is transferring. The member School District at the same time
      shall forward to the school to which the child is transferring the remainder of
      the student’s school student record and a Certification of Good Standing
      form.  “In good standing” means that the
      student’s medical records are up-to-date and complete and the child is not
      being disciplined by a suspension or expulsion.

a.   Prior written
notice must be provided to the parent(s)/guardian(s) regarding the nature and
substance of the information being released/transferred. Prior written parental
consent is required to transfer the student’s school student record to the
receiving public School District if to the extent that such school student
records contain mental health and or developmental disabilities information
protected by the Illinois Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities
Confidentialities Act.

b.   The member
School District shall send the parent(s)/guardian(s) and the child at age of
majority notice that the record is being forwarded to the new School
District.  The notice shall advise the
parent(s)/guardian(s) and the child at the age of majority of their right to
inspect the record being transferred.

c.   The member
School District shall maintain a copy of the transferring student’s temporary
record for a period of not less than 5 years. The transferring student’s
temporary record will be destroyed not later than July 1 of the fifth year after
the student’s transfer.  The School
District shall maintain for 60 years the transferring student’s permanent
record.

d.   Upon transfer,
graduation or permanent withdrawal, psychological evaluations, special
education files and other information contained in the student temporary
records which may be of continued assistance to the child may, after 5 years,
be transferred to the custody of the parent(s)/guardian(s) or to the child if
the child has succeeded to the rights of the parent(s)/guardian(s).  The School District shall explain to the
child and the parent(s)/guardian(s) the future usefulness of these records.

  1. Amendment of School Student Records
    1. A parent(s)/guardian(s) who believes that
      information in the school student records is inaccurate or misleading or
      violates the privacy or other rights of the student, exclusive of grades of the
      child and references to expulsions or out-of-school suspensions, may challenge
      the specific entry in question if the challenge is made at the time the student’s
      records are forwarded to another school where the child is transferring.
    2. The request for a hearing must be submitted in
      writing and contain notice of the specific entry or entries to be challenged
      and the root of the challenge.
    3. The school principal, or principal’s designee,
      upon receiving a written request from a parent(s)/guardian(s), shall hold an
      informal conference with the parent(s)/guardian(s) within 15 school days from
      the date of receipt of the request.  The
      school principal, or principal’s designee, will amend or delete information he
      or she determines to be inaccurate, irrelevant or improper.  If the school principal, or principal’s
      designee, refuses to amend the information, he or she shall inform the
      parent(s)/guardian(s) of the refusal and advise the parent(s)/guardian(s) of
      his/her right to proceed with a hearing.
    4. If the dispute is not resolved by the informal
      conference, formal procedures shall be initiated:

      1. A
        hearing officer, who shall not be employed in the attendance center where the
        child is enrolled, shall be appointed by the School District.
      2. The
        hearing officer shall conduct a hearing within a reasonable time, but no later
        than 15 days after the informal conference, unless the parent(s)/guardian(s)
        and school officials agree upon an extension of time. The hearing officer shall
        notify the parent(s)/guardian(s) and the school officials of the time and place
        of the hearing.
      3. A
        verbatim record of the hearing shall be made by a tape recorder or a court
        reporter.
      4. The written decision of the hearing officer
        shall, no later than 10 days after the conclusion of the hearing, be
        transmitted to the parent(s)/guardian(s) and the School District. It shall be based
        solely on the information presented at the hearing and shall be one of the
        following:

        1. To
          retain the challenged contents of the student record;
        2. To
          remove the challenged contents of the student record; or
        3. To
          change, clarify or add to the challenged contents of the student record.
        4. Any party shall have the right to appeal the
          decision of the local hearing officer to the Regional Superintendent within 20
          school days after such decision is transmitted.
          If the parent(s)/guardian(s) appeals, the parent(s)/guardian(s) shall so
          inform the school and within 10 school days, the School District shall forward
          a transcript of the hearing, a copy of the record entry in question and any
          other pertinent materials to the Regional Superintendent.  The School District may initiate an appeal by
          the same procedures. Upon receipt of such documents, the Regional
          Superintendent shall examine the documents and records to determine whether the
          School District’s proposed action in regard to the student’s record is in
          compliance with the Illinois School Student Records Act, make findings and
          issue a written decision to the parent(s)/guardian(s) and the School District
          within 20 school days of the receipt of the appeal documents. If the subject of
          the appeal involves the accuracy, relevance, or propriety of any entry in
          special education records, the Regional Superintendent should seek advice from
          special education personnel:

          1. Who
            were not authors of the entry; and
          2. Whose
            special education skills are relevant to the subject(s) of the entry in
            question.
          3. The School District shall implement the decision
            of the Regional Superintendent.
          4. If, as a result of the hearing, it is determined
            that the information is inaccurate, misleading or otherwise in violation of the
            privacy or other rights of the student, the School District shall amend the
            information and of inform the parent(s)/guardian(s) in writing within ten (10)
            days.
          5. If, as a result of the hearing, it is determined
            that the information is not inaccurate, misleading or otherwise in violation of
            the privacy or other rights of the student, the School District, within five
            (5) days, shall inform the parent(s)/guardian(s) of his/her right to place in
            the record a statement commenting on the information or setting forth any
            reasons for disagreeing with the decision of the School District.
          6. The School District shall ensure that a
            statement placed in an education record as described above:

            1. Is
              maintained by the School District as part of the record of the child as long as
              the record or contested portion is maintained by the School District; and
            2. Is
              disclosed by the School District to any party to whom the records of the child
              are disclosed.
  2. Retention and Destruction of Records
    1. The School District maintains two types of
      school student records: permanent and temporary.

      1. The
        permanent record will be consistent with Section 23 of the Illinois School
        Code. The permanent record shall include:

(1)   Basic
identifying information;

(2)   Academic
transcripts;

(3)   Attendance
record;

(4)   Accident
and health reports;

(5)   Scores
received on the Prairie State Achievement Examination;

(6)   Information
pertaining to release of this record;

b.  The permanent record may
consist of:
(1) Honors and awards, and;

(2)
School-sponsored activities and athletics.

  1. No
    other information shall be placed in the permanent record. The permanent record
    shall be maintained for at least 60 years after the child graduated, withdrew,
    or transferred.
  2. The
    temporary record will be consistent with Section 23 of the Illinois School
    code.  The temporary record is maintained
    by the district for five (5) years.  The
    temporary record may include:

(1)   Family
background;

(2)   Intelligence
and aptitude scores;

(3)   Psychological
reports;

(4)   Achievement
test results, including scores on the Illinois Standards Achievement Test;

(5)   Participation
in extracurricular activities;

(6)   Honors
and awards;

(7)   Teacher
anecdotal records;

(8)   Disciplinary
information, specifically including information regarding an expulsion,
suspension, or other punishment for misconduct involving drugs, weapons, or
bodily harm to another;

(9)   Special
education files;

(10)  Verified
reports or information from non-educational persons, agencies or organizations;

(11)  Other
verified information of clear relevance to the student’s education, and;

(12)  Information
pertaining to releases of the record.

  1. Information
    in the temporary record will indicate authorship and date.
  2. The
    District will maintain the student’s temporary record for at least 5 years
    after the child transfers, graduates, or permanently withdraws.

    1. The School District’s destruction of school
      student records, shall be pursuant to prior notice to the parent(s)/guardian(s)
      and in accordance with federal and State law, including the Local Records Act.

LEGAL REF.:      20 U.S.C. §§
1232g (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act), 20 U.S.C. §§ 1412 (State
eligibility), 1413 (local educational agency eligibility).

34 C.F.R. §§ 300.127, 300.560-576, 300.740.

34 C.F.R. Part 99.

105 ILCS 10/1 et seq.; 740 ILCS 110/1 et
seq.; 50 ILCS § 205/1 et seq.

23 Ill. Admin. Code Subpart K and §§ 226.50
(requirements for FAPE), 226.75 (definitions), 226.220 (factors in development
of the IEP), 226.740 (records; confidentiality).

23 Ill. Admin. Code Part 375 (student records).

 

Section
4. Child Identification/Child Find

  1. Each School District shall conduct activities to
    create public awareness of special education and related services and advise
    the public of the rights of children with disabilities. All such public
    awareness activities shall ensure that information is made available in each of
    the major languages represented in the School District and in language that
    will be understandable to parent(s)/guardian(s).  The School District shall maintain
    documentation of its public awareness activities.
  2. Methods which may be utilized by the School
    District to conduct public awareness activities include the following:

    1. Utilization of various local media resources
      including television, radio, and newspaper; and
    2. Development of communication links with various
      agencies that provide services to children with disabilities within the
      community and dissemination of child find materials to hospitals, clinics,
      pediatricians, pediatric nurses, and social service professionals involved in
      family or child services.
  3. Each School District’s public awareness
    activities shall include:

    1. Annual notification to all parent(s)/guardian(s)
      in the School District regarding the special education services available in or
      through the School District and of their right to receive a copy of 23 Ill.
      Admin. Code Part 226; and
    2. Annual dissemination of information to the
      community served by the School District regarding the special education
      services available in or through the School District and the rights of children
      with disabilities.
  4. Each School District shall locate, identify and
    evaluate all children from birth through 21 within the School District who may
    be eligible for special education and related services, including children who
    are not currently enrolled in the school’s educational program, children in
    nonpublic schools, and highly mobile children such as migrants and homeless
    children.  This process shall include:

    1. Collecting, maintaining and reporting current
      and accurate data on all public awareness and child find activities;
    2. Reviewing the overall success and effectiveness
      of each School District’s public awareness and child find activities;
    3. Modifying the School District’s public awareness
      and child find activities, as necessary and appropriate; and
    4. Utilizing data relative to the School District’s
      public awareness and child find activities to plan for the delivery of services
      to children with disabilities.
  5. Each School District’s child find activities
    shall further include:

    1. Annual screening of children under age 5 to identify
      those who may need early intervention or special education and related
      services;
    2. Hearing and vision screening at regular
      intervals during the child’s school career and annually for all children who
      receive special education and related services;
    3. Ongoing review of each child’s performance and
      progress by teachers and other professional personnel, in order to refer those
      children who exhibit problems with their educational progress, interaction with
      others, and/or functioning or adjustment in the school environment and may be
      eligible for special education and related services;
    4. Ongoing coordination with early intervention
      programs to identify children from birth through 2 years of age who have or are
      suspected of having disabilities, in order to ensure the timely provision of
      services; and
    5. Coordination and consultation with nonpublic
      schools located within the School District that results in child find
      activities comparable to those activities undertaken for children in the public
      schools.
  6. The School District’s child find activities
    shall be performed by personnel who meet all relevant certification or other
    relevant licensing standards.
  7. When responsible School District personnel
    conclude that an individual evaluation of a child is warranted, the procedures
    for referral and evaluation set forth herein will be followed.
  8. Flex Procedures – LCSSU is recognized by the
    Illinois State Board of Education as a pilot site to provide services to
    students through Flexible Service Delivery Model (Flex).  The Flex program is also referred to as the
    problem solving model, student assistance strategies, and/or the school-based
    intervention process.  In various LCSSU
    member districts these student based assistance teams are also referred to as
    Building Based Teams, Project Stars, and CARES.
  9. Flex Team Interventions for Students without Disabilities
    – Established in each school is a Flex team to assist teachers serving children
    who are experiencing unique problems that are interfering with educational
    success.  The Flex team may serve any
    teacher and any students requiring assistance.

 

  1. The Flex team typically includes the following
    members:

 

  1. The principal;
  2. The student’s classroom teacher; and
  3. An appropriate staff member with experience and
    training in the area in which the child is exhibiting a problem.
  4. The Flex team engages in the following
    activities:

 

  1. Teacher recognizes concerns and tries
    interventions in the classroom;
  2. Teacher contacts building team leader and
    completes appropriate forms;
  3. Core team meeting is held to specify concerns,
    brainstorm intervention ideas, and write a plan to support student within the
    general education setting;
  4. An intervention plan is implemented in the
    classroom with needed resources;
  5. A team meeting is held to evaluate and/or adjust
    the interventions;
  6. Steps No. 4 and No. 5 may be repeated as
    needed.  The intensity of the student’s
    need may increase the level of service(s) given;
  7. If this student meets the expected
    standard as identified on the intervention plan, then the intervention plan
    continues to be implemented;
  8. When a request for consideration for entitlement
    for special education services is made, assessment questions are developed by
    the team.  These questions will
    specifically identify the student’s area(s) of need and additional
    interventions needed to promote student success;
  9. The assessment questions are assigned to
    appropriate individuals as determined by the team and relevant data is
    collected; and
  10. A conference is held to review assessment
    question data and determine the student’s specific need(s) and service(s)
    required to meet those needs.  If the
    student does not meet the expected standard as identified on the
    intervention plan, then the team may decide to request consideration for
    entitlement for special education services.
    This decision is based upon documented data gathered from implemented
    interventions.
  11. Under no circumstances will the Flex team
    activities preclude, or delay, the full and individual evaluation of any child
    referred by parent(s)/guardian(s), unless the district has officially
    considered such request and has determined the request not to be in best
    interests of the child because the child exhibits satisfactory educational
    performance.  The Flex team shall not be
    used to limit or condition the right to refer a child for a full and individual
    evaluation.
  12. Target Population for Flex Team – The target
    group for flexible service delivery (FSD) consists of students who are at risk
    of academic failure due to learning and/or behavioral difficulties and whose
    classroom performance is below expected levels.
    Such students may receive intervention services through FSD without
    being referred and determined eligible for special education, although referral
    for case study evaluation can be made at any time by either school staff or
    parent(s)/guardian(s).
  13. Purpose/Rationale for Flex Projects – The
    primary purpose of the flexible service delivery system is to increase the
    capacity of local school districts to meet the needs of a diverse student
    population within the regular education environment.  By pooling resources already available within
    a district, local district personnel can provide intervention services designed
    to improve learning for students who may not be eligible for services provided
    through special education, Title 1 and other such program.  Through FSD, parents and school personnel
    work closely together to communicate information about student progress,
    identify the resources needed to meet the educational needs of children, design
    and provide appropriate intervention strategies, and regularly evaluate the
    effectiveness of such strategies.
  14. Procedural Safeguards Assurances – Special
    Education: Detailed information must be provided to parent(s)/guardian(s)
    explaining special education required assurances. Information must be provided
    to parent(s)/guardian(s) explaining the FSD and case study evaluation options.
    Parents must provide written consent for FSD services and assessment data
    collection.

    1. Full Information for Parents:  The flexible service delivery system must be
      fully detailed and explained in writing, along with the option for traditional
      case study evaluation (CSE). Written information must also explain the need for
      parental consent for gathering of performance data during the intervention
      period, the need for additional consent should a CSE be recommended, and the
      right of the parent to request a CSE at any time in the process.
    2. Intervention Assessments and Case Study
      Evaluation:
      As stated above, a referral for CSE can be made at any time
      during the intervention process.
      Assessments and observational data gathered during the intervention
      period and prior to referral for CSE can be used as components in a future CSE.  However, such data must be current (all data
      completed within the last 365 days when the CSE is conducted) and meet the
      criteria of the particular CSE component to which it is being applied.  As detailed above, parents must be fully
      informed of and give consent for this practice, and should there be a referral
      for CSE, parental consent must again be obtained.
    3. Intervention through Pull-Out:  For non-identified students, interventions
      should first be implemented in the regular education classroom.  Interventions provided outside the regular classroom
      should only be considered when in-class interventions must be short-term
      (preferably not more than one quarter school year grading period) and must be
      provided by appropriately credentialed staff .
      Interventions provided through regular assignment to a special education
      classroom are not allowed, in that such a practice could constitute placement
      in special education without due process.
    4. IEPs:
      If a student is found eligible for a special education an IEP must be
      developed.
    5. Least Restrictive Environment:  If a student is found eligible for special
      education services, the previously tried FSD interventions may not negatively
      impact placement in the least restrictive environment, with the use of
      supplementary aids and services.  The FSD
      process shall not be used as justification for a more restrictive placement for
      a student to receive special education services.  The first consideration for providing special
      education services must still be the general education classroom.
  15. When there is a reason to believe that a child
    may have a disability requiring special education and related services, the
    child shall be referred for a special education evaluation.  Referrals may be made by any concerned
    person, including but not limited to School District personnel, the
    parent(s)/guardian(s) of the child, an employee of a community service agency,
    a professional having knowledge of a child’s problems, a child, or an employee
    of the ISBE.
  16. A referral process shall be developed and
    implemented by the Director of Special Education and communicated annually to
    all professional personnel within LCSSU and to persons within the community.
    The referral procedures shall include:

    1. The steps to be taken in making a referral,
      including a direction that referrals are to be made in writing, signed, and
      dated;
    2. The person(s) to whom a referral may be made;
    3. The information that must be provided;
    4. Assistance, if needed, to enable persons making
      referrals to meet all referral requirements; and
    5. A process for providing the
      parent(s)/guardian(s) with notice of their rights with respect to procedural
      safeguards.
  17. Each School District shall decide whether or not
    to conduct an evaluation and notify the parent(s)/guardian(s) and the referring
    party in writing of the decision and the basis on which the decision was
    reached.
  18. If the School District decides to conduct an
    evaluation, parental consent must be obtained.
  19. If the School District decides not to
    conduct an evaluation, the parent(s)/guardian(s) and, subject to the
    requirements of law, the referring party, shall be notified in writing of the
    date of the referral, the reasons for which the evaluation was requested, the
    reasons that the School District decided not to conduct the evaluation and
    provided with notice of their rights with respect to procedural safeguards.

LEGAL REF.:      20 U.S.C. §§ 1412 (State eligibility),
1412 (a)(7), 1413 (local educational agency eligibility).

34
C.F.R. § 300.125.

105 ILCS
5/14-8.02(b).

23 Ill.
Admin. Code §§ 226.50 (requirements for FAPE), 226.75 (definitions), 226.100
(child find responsibility), 226.110 (referral).

 

 

Section 5. Evaluation and Determination of Eligibility

  1. Definitions
    1. Date of Referral:  The date on which written parental consent to
      complete an evaluation is obtained or provided.
    2. Domain:
      An aspect of a child’s functioning or performance that must be
      considered in the process of designing a case study evaluation.  The domains are health, vision, hearing, social-emotional
      status, general intelligence, academic performance, communication status and
      motor abilities.
  2. Procedures Upon Receipt of Referral
    1. Upon receipt of a referral for a special
      education evaluation, each School District shall:
    2. Obtain
      any required parent/guardian consent for evaluation;
    3. Determine
      whether and to what extent, further evaluation data are needed in each of the
      relevant domains and from what sources that information should be obtained;
    4. Advise
      evaluation team members of the referral and the anticipated completion date of
      all evaluation components; and
    5. Coordinate
      a meeting to consider the results of the completed evaluation(s).
  3. Identification of Needed Assessments
    1. An evaluation shall cover all domains, which are
      relevant to the individual child under consideration.

2.      The following procedures
shall be used for an evaluation:

  1. The
    IEP Team members shall review and evaluate existing information about the
    child, including the following if available:

(1)     Information from a variety
of formal and informal sources, including information provided by the child’s
parent(s)/guardian(s);

(2)     Current classroom-based
assessments and observations;

(3)     Observations by teachers and
providers of related services;

(4)     Information, if any,
provided by the child; and

(5)     Information from specialized
evaluations such as those performed by independent evaluators, medical
evaluators, behavioral intervention specialists, bilingual specialists, etc.

  1. The
    team may conduct its review without a meeting.
  2. After
    review of the information described above, the IEP Team members shall determine
    whether additional evaluation data is needed in any relevant domain and from
    what source(s) to determine:

(1)     Whether the child has, or
continues to have, one or more disabling conditions;

(2)     The present levels of
performance and educational needs of the child;

(3)     Whether the disability is
adversely affecting the child’s educational performance;

(4)     Whether the child needs or
continues to need special education and related services; and

(5)     Whether any additions or
modifications to the child’s special education and related services are needed
to enable the child to meet the goals and objectives of his/her IEP and to
participate appropriately in the general curriculum.

d.   If evaluation data are needed,
consent shall be obtained prior to conducting the evaluation.  After consent is obtained, the recommended
assessments will be completed by qualified individuals.  At the time of consent, the
parent(s)/guardian(s) shall be provided a copy of the Notice of Procedural
Safeguards.

e.   After determining that
evaluation data are needed, the School District must administer or arrange for
such tests and other evaluation procedures are necessary to produce the needed
information.

  1. If
    additional evaluation data are not needed, the School District will provide
    written notice to the parent(s)/guardian(s) of:

(1)   The
determination and reasons for such determination; and

(2)   Advise
the parent(s)/guardian(s) of their right to request an assessment for the sole
purpose of determining whether the child is or continues to be eligible for
special education services.

  1. Within
    10 school days after a parent(s)/guardian(s) requests an assessment to
    determine whether the child is or continues to be eligible for special
    education as described in (C)(2)(f) above, the School District shall:

(1)   Notify
the parent(s)/guardian(s) that it will conduct the assessment and make the
necessary arrangements, or;

(2)   Request
a due process hearing or notify the parent(s)/guardian(s) of his/her right to
request a due process hearing.

  1. Timeline for Convening Evaluation Review Meeting

1.      Within 60 school days from
the date of referral obtaining the written consent to conduct an evaluation, an
IEP meeting will be convened to consider the evaluation information. If the
child is determined eligible, and IEP also must be developed within these 60
school days.

2.      If there are fewer than 60
child attendance days remaining in the school year, the evaluation will be
completed and a meeting to consider the evaluation data will be convened prior
to the first day of the next school year.  If the child is determined eligible, an IEP
will also be developed prior to the first day of the next school year.

  1. Evaluation Requirements
    1. Before a child is evaluated, the school district
      will determine the child’s primary language or other mode of communication and
      general cultural identification, in accordance with the requirements of 23 Ill.
      Admin. Code § 226.140.
    2. Any recommended tests and other evaluation
      materials will be:

a.   Selected and administered so as
not to be discriminatory on a racial or cultural basis;

b.   Provided and administered in
the child’s native language or other mode of communication, unless it is
clearly not feasible to do so;

c.   Technically sound and designed
to assess specific aspect(s) of the child’s functioning;

d.   Administered by trained and
knowledgeable personnel and consistent with the instructions provided by the
publishers of the texts and evaluation materials;

e.   Validated for the specific
purposes for which it is used;

f.    Selected and administered so
as to best ensure that if such instrument is provided to a child with impaired
sensory, manual, or speaking skills, that the test results accurately reflect
the level of the child’s achievement and/or aptitude.

  1. No single procedure and no single individual
    shall be used as the sole criterion or evaluator to assess whether or not the
    child has a disability or in determining appropriate programming for the
    child.  Tests and other evaluation
    materials shall be tailored to assess specific areas of educational need and
    may not be merely those that are designed to provide a single intelligence
    quotient.
  2. The School District shall use assessment tools
    and strategies that provide relevant information and are sufficiently
    comprehensive to assist in identifying all of the child’s needs for special
    education and related services, whether commonly linked to the disability
    according to which the child has been classified.
  3. If the assessment is conducted under nonstandard
    conditions, a description of the extent to which the assessment varied from
    standard conditions shall be included in the evaluation report.
  4. Any individual conducting a component of an
    evaluation shall meet the requirements set forth in 23 Ill. Admin. Code §
    226.840.
  5. If any portion of an evaluation cannot be
    completed due to lack of parental involvement, religious convictions of the
    family, or inability of the child to participate in an evaluation procedure,
    the School District shall note missing portions in the evaluation report and
    state the reasons why such portions could not be completed.

 

  1. Determination of Eligibility
    1. No later than 60 school days following the date
      of obtaining consent to conduct an evaluation (or prior to the first day of the
      next school year if there are less than 60 school days remaining at the time
      consent is provided), an IEP meeting will be held to consider the results of
      the evaluation.  If the child is
      determined to be eligible for special education and related services an IEP
      will be developed.
    2. The IEP Team shall include the following
      individuals:

      1. The
        parent(s)/guardian(s) of the child;
      2. A
        regular education teacher if the child does or may participate in the regular
        education environment.  For a child of
        less than school age, an individual qualified to teach preschool children;
      3. A
        special education teacher;
      4. A
        representative of the School District who:

(1)
Is qualified to provide, to supervise the
provision of, specially designed instruction to meet the needs of children with
disabilities;

(2)
Is knowledgeable about the general curriculum;

(3)
Is knowledgeable about the School District’s
resources; and

(4)
Has the authority to make commitments for the
provision of resources and is able to ensure that the services provided in the
IEP are implemented.

  1. An
    individual who is qualified to interpret the instructional implications of the
    evaluation results, and who may be one of the individuals listed above;
  2. A
    representative of any other agency that is likely to be responsible for
    providing or paying for transition services, if the child is one for whom
    transition services are to be planned;
  3. The
    child, if age 18 or older and/or if a purpose of the meeting is to plan for
    needed transition services.
  4. Other
    individuals with knowledge or special expertise regarding the child, including
    providers of related services; and
  5. An individual qualified to administer individual
    diagnostic evaluations of children if the child is suspected of having a
    learning disability.
  6. The IEP Team, after considering the evaluation
    and other information available regarding the child, shall determine whether
    the child is or continues to be eligible for special education and related
    services as a child with a disability as defined by federal and state law.  In making this determination, the IEP Team
    shall:

    1. Draw
      upon information from a variety a sources, including aptitude and achievement
      tests, parental input, teacher recommendations, physical condition, social or
      cultural background, and adaptive behavior;
    2. Ensure
      that information obtained from all of these sources is documented and
      considered; and
    3. Ensure
      that a psychological evaluation has been conducted and a recommendation for
      eligibility has been made by a school psychologist for all children determined
      mentally impaired.
    4. A child may not be determined eligible if the
      determinant factor for that determination is lack of instruction in reading or
      math or limited English proficiency and the child does not otherwise meet the
      School District’s eligibility criteria.
    5. A report of the IEP meeting will be prepared and
      contain the following:
    6. A
      description of the team’s consideration of pre-existing information about the
      child, all new evaluation results obtained and any other information relevant
      to the decision about the child’s eligibility;
    7. The
      date of the meeting;
    8. The
      names, positions and signatures of those in attendance at the meeting; and
    9. Any
      separate written statement provided by a participant who wishes to be on record
      as disagreeing with the conclusions expressed in the team’s report.

      1. A copy of the IEP Team’s report, together with
        all documentation upon which it is based will be maintained in the child’s temporary
        education record in accordance with confidentiality requirements.
      2. A copy of the completed document will be
        provided to the parent(s)/guardian(s).
        If requested, a copy of any evaluation reports will also be provided.
      3. No later than 10 school days following the IEP
        meeting, the parent(s)/guardian(s) will be provided a written notice of the
        determination of the team, in compliance with 23 Ill. Admin. Code § 226.520.  A copy of the Procedural Safeguards Statement
        will also be provided to the parent(s)/guardian(s) no later than 10 school days
        following the meeting.
  7. Determination of a Learning Disability
    1. A team may determine that a child has a specific
      learning disability if:
    2. The
      child does not achieve commensurate with his/her age and ability levels in one
      of more of the areas listed in paragraph (a) (2) of this section, if provided
      with learning experiences appropriate for the child’s age and ability levels;
      and
    3. The
      team finds that a child has a severe discrepancy between achievement and
      intellectual ability in one or more of the following areas:

(1)   Oral
expression.

(2)   Listening
comprehension.

(3)   Written
expression.

(4)   Basic
reading skill.

(5)   Reading
comprehension.

(6)   Mathematics
calculation.

(7)   Mathematics
reasoning.

  1. The team may not identify a child as having a
    specific learning disability if the severe discrepancy between ability and
    achievement is primarily the result of:

    1. A
      visual, hearing or motor impairment;
    2. Mental
      retardation;
    3. Emotional
      disturbance; or
    4. Environmental,
      cultural or economic disadvantage.
    5. At least one team member other than the child’s
      teacher must observe the child’s academic performance in the regular classroom
      setting.  In the case of a child of less
      than school age or out of school, a team member shall observe the child in an
      environment appropriate for a child of that age.
    6. For a child suspected of having a specific
      learning disability, the documentation of the team’s determination of
      eligibility must include a statement of:

      1. Whether
        the child has a specific learning disability;
      2. The
        basis for making the determination;
      3. The
        relevant behavior noted during the observation of the child;
      4. The
        relationship of that behavior to the child’s academic functioning;
      5. The
        educationally relevant medical findings, if any;
      6. Whether
        there is a severe discrepancy between achievement and ability that is not
        correctable without special education and related services; and
      7. The
        determination of the team concerning the effects of environmental, cultural, or
        economic disadvantage.
      8. Each team member shall certify in writing
        whether the report reflects his/her conclusion.
        If it does not reflect his/her conclusion, the team member must submit a
        separate statement presenting his/her conclusions.
  2. Reevaluations
    1. The School District shall ensure that a
      reevaluation of each child with a disability is conducted if conditions warrant
      an evaluation, or if the child’s parent(s)/guardian(s) or teacher requests a
      reevaluation, but at least one every three years.
    2. The School District shall reevaluate an eligible
      child before determining that he/she is no longer eligible for special
      education and related Services.
    3. A reevaluation shall be conducted in accordance
      with Sections B (Referral) and F (Eligibility) of this Section.
  3. Consideration of Privately Obtained Evaluations
    1. If the parent(s)/guardian(s) advises the School
      District that it has recently had the child evaluated by an individual not
      employed by the School District, the School District should:

a.   Request a copy of the
evaluation report, if available, for consideration by the IEP Team; and

b.   Obtain consent for release of
information from the private evaluator.

  1. Upon receipt of an evaluation report or a
    request by a parent(s)/guardian(s) to convene an IEP meeting to consider an
    independent evaluation, the School District shall, within 10 days, send written
    notice of an IEP meeting.
  2. At the IEP meeting, the School District shall
    consider the results of the evaluation in any decision made with respect to the
    child’s free appropriate public education.

LEGAL REF.:      20 U.S.C. §§ 1412
(State eligibility), 1412 (a)(7), 1413 (local educational agency eligibility),
1413 (a)(1), 1414(a)(b)(c).

34  C.F.R. §§
300.126, 220, 320, 321, 530 – 536, 540, 542.

105 ILCS 5/14-8.02

23 Ill. Admin. Code §§ 226.75 (definitions), 226.110
(referral), 226.120 (identification of needed assessments), 226.130 (evaluation
requirements), 226.160 (determination of eligibility), 226.170 (criteria for
determining the existence of a specific learning disability), 226.180
(independent educational evaluation), 226.210 (IEP team), 226.520 (notification
of district’s proposal), 226.840 (qualifications of evaluators).

 

Section 6. Individualized Education Programs

A.        Development of IEP

1.      An
IEP meeting will be conducted within 30 days (and no later than 60 school days
from the date of referral) after a child is determined to be eligible.  The child receiving special education and
related services must have an IEP developed in compliance with these procedures
and in effect at the beginning of each subsequent school year.

2.      The
specified group of persons responsible for the development of the IEP (IEP
Team) includes:

a.   A representative of the School
District (other than the child’s teacher) who is qualified to provide or
supervise the provision of special education, is knowledgeable about the
general curriculum, is knowledgeable about the School District’s resources and
has the authority to make commitments for the provision of resources set forth
in the IEP;

b.   At least one of the child’s
special education teachers, or when appropriate, at least one special education
provider of the child. If the child is receiving only speech and language
services, the speech and language pathologist shall fulfill this role;

c.   At least one regular education
teacher of the child (if the child is, or may be, participating in regular
education environment);

d.   One or both of the child’s
parent(s)/guardian(s);

e.   The child may be invited by
either the School District or the parent(s)/guardian(s). The School District
shall invite the child when the purpose of the IEP meeting is to consider and
plan transition services or when the child has reached the age of 18. When the
child does not attend the IEP meeting where transition services are discussed,
the School District shall take other steps to ensure that the child’s
preferences and interests are considered;

f.    Other individuals, at the
discretion of the parent(s)/guardian(s) or School District, who have knowledge
or special expertise regarding the child, including related services personnel
as appropriate;

g.   An individual who is qualified
to interpret the instructional implications of the evaluation results;

h.   If appropriate, a qualified
bilingual specialist or bilingual teacher (who may be one of the individuals
listed above);

i.    If appropriate, and in those
cases where the child’s behavior impedes his/her learning or the learning of
others, a person knowledgeable about positive behavior strategies; and

j.    If transition services will be
discussed, the School District shall invite representative(s) of other agencies
that are likely to be responsible for providing or paying for transition
services.

  1. The School District will take the following
    steps to encourage parental/guardian participation in the IEP process:

a.   The School
District will schedule each IEP meeting at a mutually agreed upon time and
place, whenever possible;

b.   The School
District will notify parent(s)/guardian(s) at least 10 days prior to any IEP
meeting of the purpose, time and location of the meeting, the titles of the
persons who will be in attendance, and the parent(s)/guardian(s) right to
invite other individuals with knowledge or special expertise regarding the
child;

c.   The School
District may conduct an IEP meeting without a parent(s)/guardian(s) in
attendance if the School District is unable to obtain parent(s)/guardian(s)
participation;

d.   If neither
parent(s)/guardian(s) is present at an IEP meeting, the School District will
maintain a record of attempts to secure parental participation such as:

(1)  Records of
telephone calls made or attempted and the results;

(2)  Copies of
correspondence and any responses received; and

(3)  Record of home
visits and visits to place of employment and the results of those visits.

e.   If neither
parent(s)/guardian(s) can attend an IEP meeting in person, the School District
will use other methods to ensure parental participation, including individual
or conference telephone calls; and

f.    The School
District will take whatever action is necessary to ensure that the
parent(s)/guardian(s) understand the proceedings of the IEP meeting, including
the use of an interpreter for parent(s)/guardian(s) who are deaf or limited- or
non-English speaking.

  1. In developing a child’s IEP, the IEP Team shall
    consider the strengths of the child, the concerns of the parent(s)/guardian(s)
    regarding the child’s education, and the most recent valid evaluation and any
    available useful assessment.  The IEP
    Team shall also consider the following factors and if the child needs a device
    or service to receive a FAPE, these must be documented in the IEP:

    1. If
      appropriate, positive behavior strategies, interventions, and supports for
      children with behavior that impedes their learning or that of others;
    2. Language
      needs, for children with limited English proficiency;
    3. Instruction
      in Braille and the use of Braille, unless the IEP Team determines it is not
      needed, for children who are blind or visually impaired;
    4. Communication
      needs;
    5. Assistive
      technology devices and services; and
    6. For
      a child who is deaf or hard of hearing, the IEP Team must consider the child’s
      language and communication needs, opportunities for direct communication with
      peers and professionals in the child’s language and communication mode,
      academic level and full range of needs, including opportunities for direct
      instruction in the child’s language and communication mode.
    7. The IEP shall include the following components:
      1. A
        statement of the child’s present levels of educational performance.  This must include a statement of how the
        child’s disability affects his/her involvement and progress in the general
        curriculum. For preschool children, as appropriate, the statement must describe
        how the disability affects the child’s participation in appropriate activities.
      2. A
        statement of measurable annual goals that reflect consideration of the State
        Goals for Learning and the Illinois Learning Standards as well as benchmarks or
        short-term objectives, related to the following:

(1)  Meeting the child’s
needs that result from the child’s disability to enable the child to be
involved in and progress in the general curriculum or for preschool children to
participate in age appropriate activities; and

(2)  Meeting each of the
child’s other educational needs that result from the child’s disability.

  1. A
    description of the specific special education and related services and
    supplementary aids and services and program modifications or supports that will
    be provided for the child to:

(1)  Advance appropriately toward attaining the
annual goals; and

(2)  Be involved and progress in the
general curriculum and participate in extracurricular and other nonacademic
activities.

  1. The
    projected beginning date for the services and modifications, and the amount, frequency,
    and anticipated duration of specific special education and related services to
    be provided.
  2. An
    explanation of the extent, if any, to which the child will not participate with
    nondisabled children in  regular
    classrooms and in extracurricular and nonacademic activities.
  3. A
    statement of any extended school year services to be provided to the child.
  4. A
    statement of the child’s ability to participate in state and School District
    wide assessments.  This statement must
    include any individual accommodations that are needed for the child to
    participate in the assessment. If the IEP Team determines that the child will
    not participate in a particular assessment of child achievement (or part of an
    assessment), a statement documenting why the assessment is not appropriate for
    the child and how the child will be assessed, including a description of
    alternative assessments, must be included in the IEP.
  5. A
    statement describing how the child’s progress towards annual goals will be
    measured, and how the child’s parent(s)/guardian(s) will be regularly informed
    (by such means as report cards), at least as often as parent(s)/guardian(s) are
    informed of their nondisabled children’s progress of:

(1)  The child’s
progress toward annual goals; and

(2)  The extent to which
that progress is sufficient to enable the child to achieve the goals by the end
of the year.

  1. Beginning at age 14, the IEP shall contain a
    statement of any transition services needed, which focuses on the child’s course
    of study.
  2. When the child reaches age 14½, the IEP must
    include goals for employment, postsecondary education, or community living
    alternatives, and a description of transition supports or services, including,
    if appropriate, a statement of the interagency responsibilities or any needed
    linkages.
  3. The
    IEP for a child who has reached the age of 17 shall include documentation that
    the child has been informed of the rights under IDEA that will transfer to the
    child when he or she reaches the age of 18.
  4. The placement the IEP Team has determined to be
    appropriate for the child.
  5. Before the School District places a child or
    refers a child to a private school or facility:

a.   The School District
will convene an IEP meeting with a representative of the private school in
attendance or will use other methods to ensure participation by the private
school or facility (including individual or conference telephone calls) in its
development.

b.   With respect to the
annual review and revision of the IEP of a child with a disability placed or
referred to a private school by a School District, the School District may
permit the private school to initiate IEP meetings which will be conducted as
described above, provided that the parent(s)/guardian(s) of the child and a
representative of the School District are invited to participate in any
decision about the child’s IEP and agree to any proposed changes in the IEP.

  1. Each initial IEP must be completed by the IEP
    Team no later than 30 days after the determination of eligibility and in no
    case later than 60 school days after the date of referral.  When a child is referred for an evaluation
    with fewer than 60 days of pupil attendance left in the school year, the
    eligibility determination shall be made and, if the child is eligible, an IEP
    shall be in effect prior to the first day of the next school year.
  2. No School District shall provide special
    education or related services to a child with a disability unless and until an
    IEP has been completed and a placement has been made pursuant to the
    requirements set forth by federal and State law.
  3. The School District shall provide the
    parent(s)/guardian(s) with a copy of the IEP at no cost to the parent.
  4. Once the child reaches the age of majority, the
    School District shall continue to provide written notices to the child’s
    parent(s)/guardian(s).

B.        Determination
of Related Services

  1. Participants in the IEP Team meetings held to
    develop, review, or revise the IEP shall determine specific related services
    necessary to assist a child in benefiting from his special education.
  2. If a related service is determined by the IEP
    Team to be a needed service, the IEP Team shall include the service in the IEP
    at no cost to the child or to the child’s parent(s)/guardian(s).
  3. Implementation of the IEP

1.      Implementation
of the IEP will occur within 10 days after the parent(s)/guardian(s) have been
provided notice of the placement unless otherwise agreed by the IEP Team.

2.      The IEP
must be accessible to all staff members who are responsible for implementing
the IEP; each shall be informed of his/her specific responsibilities relating
to the IEP and the specific accommodations, modifications and supports to be
provided to the child in accordance with the IEP.

3.      The School
District is not required by the IDEA to make FAPE available to a child with a
disability who has been convicted as an adult under State law and incarcerated
in an adult prison. The IEP Team may make modifications to the IEP or placement
if the State has demonstrated a bona fide security or compelling penological
interest that cannot otherwise be accommodated.

  1. Consent for Initial Placement Based upon the IEP

1.      As
part of the IEP process, the IEP Team must determine the child’s special
education placement in the least restrictive environment.

2.      Written
parental consent is required at least 10 days prior to the initiation of the
recommended placement.
Parent(s)/guardian(s) may waive the 10-calendar-day interval before
placement.

  1. Review and Revision of the IEP

1.      The
IEP of each child with a disability currently receiving special education and
related services must be reviewed at least annually.

2.      The
School District must reconvene an IEP meeting upon notice that transition
services described in the IEP are not being implemented as proposed to identify
alternative strategies to meet the transition objectives set forth in the IEP.

3.      A
child’s teacher or parent(s)/guardian(s) may request a review of the child’s
IEP at any time. (The IEP team must reconvene any time there is a change in the
type or amount of service on the IEP.)
Within 10 days after receipt of such request, the School District will
either agree and notify the parent(s)/guardian(s) of the meeting, or notify the
parent(s)/guardian(s) in writing of its refusal to meet.  Notice of a refusal will include an
explanation of the reason no meeting is necessary to ensure a FAPE to the
child.

  1. Transfer Children

1.      If a
child receiving special education transfers into another School District, the
receiving School District will ensure FAPE by providing special education and
related services in conformity with an IEP.

a.   The
School District shall immediately enroll and initiate education services.

b.   The
School District may adopt the former School District’s IEP. Such adoption does
not require an IEP meeting if a copy of the current IEP is available, the
parent(s)/guardian(s) indicate satisfaction with the current IEP, and the
School District determines that the current IEP is appropriate and can be
implemented as written.

c.   If
the School District cannot fully implement an IEP from the child’s former
School District, the receiving School District shall note in the IEP the
services to be provided and shall explain
its plans to secure the remaining services, resources, or other
unfulfilled portions of the IEP and how long those actions are expected to
take.

d.   The
School District may develop a new IEP for the child if the School District or
the parent(s)/guardian(s) do not believe the current IEP is appropriate. In
such a case, the School District shall, within ten days after the date of the
child’s enrollment, initiate an IEP meeting for the purpose of developing the
new IEP. While the new IEP is under development, the School District shall
implement the IEP from the former School District.

2.      If
the School District does not receive a copy of the transfer child’s IEP or
verbal confirmation of requirements of the IEP from the former School District,
the child will be enrolled and served in the setting that the School District
believes will meet the child’s needs until the current IEP is obtained or a new
IEP is developed.

LEGAL REF.:      20 U.S.C.§§
1400(c), 1412(a)(4), 1414(d).

34 C.F.R. §§ 300.128, 300.340-350, (individualized
education programs); 300.137, (performance goals and indicators); 300.138
(participation in assessments); 300.139 (reports relating to assessments).

105 ILCS 5/2-3.64, 5/14-8.02.

23 Ill. Admin. Code §§ 226.200 (general requirements),
226.210  (IEP team), 226.220 (factors in
development of the IEP), 226.230
(content of the IEP), 226.240 (determination of placement), 226.250
(child aged 3 through 5), 226.260 (child reaching age 3), 226.300 (continuum of
placement options), 226.310 (related services), 226.320 (service to students
living in residential care facilities), 226.330 (placement by school district
in state-operated or nonpublic special education facilities), 226.530 (parents’
participation).

 

 

Section 7. Least Restrictive Environment

A.        Overview of Placement

  1. The School District supports the right of children
    with disabilities to be educated with nondisabled children to the maximum
    extent appropriate.
  2. The child’s placement shall be based on the
    child’s IEP and shall be as close as possible to the child’s home.  Unless the IEP of a child with a disability
    requires some other arrangement, the child shall be educated in the school that
    he or she would attend if nondisabled.  A
    placement determination based solely upon the category of a child’s disability
    or on the current configuration of the School District’s service delivery
    system is prohibited.  In selecting the
    least restrictive environment (LRE), consideration shall be given to any
    potential harmful effect on the child or on the quality of services received.
  3. Children with disabilities must be allowed to
    participate to the maximum extent appropriate with nondisabled children in
    nonacademic and extracurricular activities (including meals, recess periods,
    athletics, clubs and recreational activities).
  4. Parental participation shall be encouraged.  Written parental consent is required only
    before initial special education placement.
    In cases in which written parental consent cannot be obtained, the
    School District may request a due process hearing to compel services/placement
    in special education.
  5. Participation in Regular Education Programs
    1. The School District shall take steps to ensure
      that children with disabilities have equal access to the variety of educational
      programs and services available to nondisabled children.
    2. Steps taken by the School District to ensure the
      availability of regular educational programs and services to children with
      disabilities may include, but not be limited to:

      1. Modification
        of instructional methodologies, staffing, materials and equipment to permit
        effective participation; and
      2. Individualization
        of the instructional program including staffing, curriculum modifications,
        classroom accommodations, modified grading, assistive technology and
        instructional materials to permit the effective participation of children with
        disabilities.
      3. The IEP must include a statement describing how
        the child’s disability adversely affects the child’s participation in, and
        progress toward general education curriculum objectives, including:

        1. Participation
          in extracurricular and other nonacademic activities;
        2. The
          extent to which the child will be educated and participate with nondisabled
          children;
        3. An
          explanation of the extent, if any, to which the child will not participate with
          nondisabled children; and
        4. A
          statement of any individual modifications in the administration of State or
          School District-wide assessments necessary in order for the child to
          participate in the assessments.  If the
          IEP Team determines that the child cannot participate in State or School
          District-wide assessments, the IEP Team must explain why and describe how the
          child will be alternately assessed.  (See
          Section 6, Individualized Education Programs.)

C.        Continuum of Placement Options

  1. Regular Education Classroom with Modifications –
    The child receives his/her education in a regular education classroom. (A
    regular education classroom is one that is composed of children of whom at
    least 70 percent are without identified special education eligibility,
    that utilizes the general curriculum, that is taught by an instructor certified
    for regular education, and that is not designated as a general remedial
    classroom.)  However, in accordance with
    the child’s IEP, the regular education instruction may be modified through:

    1. Supportive
      services or specialized instruction;
    2. Consultation
      to and with special education personnel;
    3. Provision
      of special equipment, materials and accommodations;
    4. Modification
      of the instructional program or grades;
    5. Modification
      of curriculum content or methodology; or
    6. Other
      supplementary services, such as itinerant or resource services, in conjunction
      with the regular class placement.
    7. Regular Classes with Resource Services or
      Related Services – The child receives his/her education in a regular classroom
      with the special education instructor for less than 50% of the school day.  Resource classes and services for such
      children shall be subject to the following limitations:

      1. Enrollment
        shall be limited to the number of children who can effectively and
        appropriately receive assistance, up to a maximum of 20 children.
      2. The
        teacher or service provider shall participate in determining the appropriate
        enrollment.
      3. A
        School District may not increase the enrollment in a resource class or service
        when a noncertified assistant is provided.
      4. Instructional Services – The child receives
        special education instruction for 50 percent of the school day or more.  In accordance with a child’s IEP, this may
        include:

        1. Inclusion
          in those areas of the standard program deemed appropriate; and
        2. Provision
          of related services.
      5. Special School – The child receives all of
        his/her special education instruction in a separate facility.  In accordance with a child’s IEP, this may include:

        1. Inclusion
          in those areas of the standard program deemed appropriate; and
        2. Provision
          of related services.
      6. Home/Hospital Services – The child is eligible
        for services at home or in a hospital because he/she is unable to attend school
        due to a medical condition that will cause an absence for 10 or more
        consecutive school days or ongoing intermittent absences. Eligibility for
        home/hospital services shall be determined in accordance with 23 Ill. Admin.
        Code § 226.300(d).
      7. State-Operated or Nonpublic Programs – The
        child’s exceptional characteristics are so profound or complex that no special
        education program services offered by the public schools can adequately or
        appropriately meet his/her needs.

D.        Determining Educational Placement

  1. In determining any educational placement of a
    child, the School District shall ensure that:

    1. The
      placement decision is made by a group of persons, including the
      parent(s)/guardian(s), and other persons knowledgeable about the child, the
      meaning of the evaluation data, and the placement options, and is made in
      conformity with the least restrictive environment requirements;
    2. The
      child’s placement is determined at least annually, is based on the child’s IEP,
      and is as close as possible to the child’s home;
    3. Unless
      the IEP of a child with a disability requires some other arrangement, the child
      is educated in the school he/she would attend if nondisabled;
    4. In
      selecting the LRE, consideration is given to any potentially harmful effect on
      the child or on the quality of services that the child needs; and
    5. A
      child with a disability is not removed from education in age-appropriate
      regular classrooms solely because of needed modifications in the general
      curriculum.
    6. When making a placement determination, the IEP
      Team shall review the continuum of placement options set forth in Subsection C,
      Continuum of Placement Options, in descending order and recommend the first
      placement option wherein the goals, objectives, benchmarks, accommodations,
      supportive services, aids and related services can be appropriately
      implemented.
    7. When making a placement determination on behalf
      of a child with a disability between the ages of 3-5, the School District must
      provide a free appropriate public education (FAPE) in the least restrictive
      environment.  The least restrictive
      environment alternatives may include:

      1. Providing
        opportunities for the participation (even part-time) of preschool children with
        disabilities in other preschool programs operated by public agencies (such as
        Head Start);
      2. Placing
        children with disabilities in private school programs for nondisabled preschool
        children or private preschool programs that integrate children with
        disabilities and nondisabled children; or
      3. Locating
        classes for preschool children with disabilities in regular elementary schools.
      4. In the event the School District must remove a
        special education child from his/her current program because of behavior
        believed to be dangerous to the child or to others or due to a weapons or drug
        violation, the IEP Team or school personnel shall identify an interim
        alternative educational setting (IAES).
        This setting will enable the child to continue to progress in the
        general curriculum and to receive those services and modifications as described
        in the child’s current IEP.
      5. Homebound instruction may be recommended by the
        IEP Team in accordance with subsection C of this Section and the eligibility
        requirements under 23 Ill. Admin. Code § 226.300(d).

E.         Placements Outside the Regular
Education Environment

  1. All services and educational placements must be
    individually determined based upon the unique abilities and needs of each
    child.  Before a child can be placed
    outside of the regular educational environment, the full range of supplementary
    aids and services that would facilitate the child’s placement in a regular
    environment must be considered.  If a
    determination is made that the child’s disability cannot be adequately
    accommodated in the regular education environment, even with the provision of
    appropriate supplementary aids and services, the child may then be considered
    for placement outside the regular education environment.
  2. In all cases, placement decisions must be
    individually determined on the basis of each child’s abilities and needs, and
    not based solely upon the category of the disability, significance of
    disability, availability of special education and related services,
    configuration of the service delivery system, availability of space, or
    administrative convenience.  Rather, each
    child’s IEP forms the basis for each placement decision.
  3. In recommending a placement outside of the
    regular education environment, the IEP Team shall first consider placement in
    both chronologically age-appropriate classroom settings and chronologically
    age-appropriate schools.  The age range
    of the children in any instructional group shall not exceed 4 years at the
    primary and intermediate levels or 6 years at the secondary level.

F.         Placement in Nonpublic Programs

  1. An IEP Team recommending placement of a child in
    a nonpublic special education program, including both day and residential
    programs, shall not make such recommendations unless no less restrictive
    setting on the continuum of alternative placements will meet a child’s needs.
  2. In recommending placement of a child in special
    education day programming, the IEP Team shall consider the transportation
    distance of such placement.  Deference
    shall be given to appropriate programming that is within a reasonable distance
    from the child’s residence and does not exceed one hour of travel each way.

G.        Reconsideration of Educational Placement

  1. The IEP of each child shall be reviewed at least
    annually to determine whether the goals for the child are being achieved.
  2. The IEP Team may recommend a more restrictive
    placement as necessary.  A more
    restrictive placement may be recommended if a significant number of the goals,
    objectives and benchmarks identified in the current IEP were not successfully
    achieved or it is determined that the curricula, instructional methodologies,
    staffing patterns and classroom organization identified in the current IEP
    cannot be adequately implemented in the current placement or setting.

H.        Nonacademic
and Extracurricular Services

  1. The placement decision shall permit the child to
    participate, as appropriate, in nonacademic and extracurricular services and
    activities (e.g., meals, recess, recreational activities, and clubs sponsored
    by the School District).  According to
    the needs of the child, as articulated in his/her IEP, a School District may
    provide service(s) to a child in order to allow him/her to access participation
    in nonacademic or extracurricular activities (e.g., interpreter,
    transportation, behavioral contracting).
  2. A child with a disability may be excluded from
    participation in nonacademic and extracurricular activities for misconduct
    provided the exclusion is consistent with the School District’s disciplinary
    code, is applied to children without disabilities and takes into consideration
    the special needs of the child.

 

LEGAL REF.:      20 U.S.C.§ 1400 et
seq
. (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act). 20 U.S.C. §§ 1412
(State eligibility), 1412 (a)(7), 1413 (local educational agency eligibility).


34 C.F.R. §§ 300.305 (program options), 300.345
(parent(s)/guardian(s) participation), 300.346 (development review and revision
of IEP), 300.347 (content of IEP), 300.350 (general LRE requirements), 300.551,
(continuum of alternative placements), 300.552 (placements), 300.553
(nonacademic settings).

105 ILCS 5/14-1.02 (children with disabilities),
5/15-8.02 (identification, evaluation & placement of children).

23 Ill. Admin. Code. §§ 226.240 (determination of
placement), 226.300 (continuum of placement options), 226.530
(parent(s)/guardian(s)’ participation), 226.730 (case load/class size), 226.220
(factors in development of the IEP), 226.230 (content of the IEP).

 

Section 8. Transition Of Children From Part C To Preschool
Programs

A.        Identification Prior to Age 3

  1. As provided for in Section 4, Child
    Identification, the School District shall actively seek out and identify all
    children from birth through age 21 years of age who are suspected of having a
    disability that adversely affects educational performance.
  2. The School District shall have in effect at age
    3 an IEP or IFSP for all eligible children.

B.        Coordination between Part C and Part B
Services

1.      The
Director of Special Education shall be responsible for maintaining ongoing
dialogue with the Early Intervention Program(s) serving infants and toddlers
with disabilities for the purpose of:

a.   Facilitating
and coordinating child-find activities; and

b.   Establishing a
crosswalk between services for infants and toddlers and services for children
with disabilities beginning at age 3.

2.      The
School District may participate in transition planning conferences arranged by
the Early Intervention Program with reasonable notice.  During each transition planning conference
the School District may:

a.   Review with
the early intervention service providers and the family the procedural
safeguards available to families and children with disabilities at age 3;

b.   Prior to the
child’s third birthday arrange for a meeting with the family and those agencies
providing IFSP services for the purpose of discussing the rights of
parent(s)/guardian(s) and the services provided by the School District.  This meeting shall be arranged for any child
who may be eligible for such preschool services;

c.   Initiate a
referral for a full and individual evaluation to determine eligibility for
services under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act Amendments of
1997 and in accordance with the procedures found in Section 5, Evaluation and
Determination of Eligibility.  The Early
Learning Team may accept assessment material already generated by the 0-3
program in order to fulfill requirements of the case study.  If not sufficient the team will conduct a
case study.

d.   Review with
the family the difference between an IFSP, an IEP and school services that may
be needed by the student.  The Early
Learning team may transfer IFSP information to the appropriate paperwork for
the IEP to fulfill all requirements needed for case study.

 

LEGAL REF.:      20 U.S.C.§ 1400 et
seq. 20 U.S.C. §§ 1412 (State eligibility), 1412 (a)(7), 1413 (local
educational agency eligibility).

34 C.F.R. §§ 300.125 (child find), 300.132 (transition
of children from Part C to preschool programs), 300.148 (public participation),
300.342 (when IEPs must be in effect).

105 ILCS 5/14-1.02 (children with disabilities),
5/14-8.02 (identification, evaluation & placement of children).

23 Ill. Admin. Code §§ 226.100 (child find
responsibility), 226.260 (child reaching age 3), 226.250 (child aged 3 through
5).

 

Section
9. Procedures For Children In Nonpublic Special
Education Programs/Facilities And Children In Private Schools

 

A.        Placements by
the School District in Nonpublic Special Education Programs/Facilities

1.      The IEP
Team shall conduct a meeting(s) and complete an IEP before placing a child in a
nonpublic special education program or facility.

a.   The School
District is responsible for arranging participation of a representative of the
non-public school/facility in the IEP meeting.

b.   The School
District remains responsible for the development and implementation of the
child’s IEP.

2.      The School
District will determine, for those children placed in a nonpublic special
education program or facility, that the provision contained in 23 Ill. Admin.
Code § 226.330(c) are satisfied.

B.        Unilateral
Placement of Children in Nonpublic Special Education Program or Facility by
Their Parent(s)/Guardian(s)

  1. The School District is not responsible for
    educational costs, including special education and related services, of
    children placed in nonpublic special education program or facilities by their
    parent(s)/guardian(s) if the School District made or attempted to make FAPE
    available to the child and the parent(s)/guardian(s) elected to place the child
    in a nonpublic special education program or facility.
  2. No child who is placed into a nonpublic facility
    by his/her parent(s)/guardian(s) without the consent or referral of the School
    District has an individual right to receive the special education and related
    services the child would receive if enrolled in the School District.
  3. The School District will notify the
    parent(s)/guardian(s) of the conditions under which reimbursement for the cost
    of a unilateral placement in a nonpublic special education program or facility
    may be reduced or denied. Those conditions include:

    1. Failure
      of the parent(s)/guardian(s) to inform the IEP Team of their dissatisfaction
      with the placement proposed by the School District and a statement of their
      concerns and their intent to enroll their child in a nonpublic special
      education program or facility at public expense at least 10 business days prior
      to the removal of the child from the public school; or
    2. If,
      prior to the parent(s)/guardian(s)’ removal of the child from the public
      school, the School District informed the parent(s)/guardian(s), through the
      notice requirements of its intent to evaluate the child, but the
      parent(s)/guardian(s) did not make the child available for the evaluation; or
    3. Any
      judicial finding of unreasonableness with respect to the actions taken by the
      parent(s)/guardian(s).

C.        Child Find For Children with
Disabilities in Private Schools

  1. The School District shall develop and implement
    a system to locate, identify and evaluate children with disabilities who reside
    in the School District and who attend private, including religiously affiliated
    schools.

    1. The
      School District is responsible for conducting child find activities for private
      school children with disabilities that are comparable to those for children
      with disabilities in public schools.
    2. The
      School District shall consult with appropriate representatives of private
      schools on how to carry out private school child find activities.

D.        Special
Education and Related Services for Children with Disabilities in Private
Schools

1.      Upon
initial evaluation and determination that a child is eligible for special
education and related services, the School District will inform the
parent(s)/guardian(s) that:

a.   The School
District will provide the child a free and appropriate public education (FAPE)
if the child is enrolled in the public school.

b.   If the child
remains in the private school and will receive services from the School
District, the School District will develop a services plan for the child.

c.   The School
District is not obligated to provide the special education and related services
the child would receive if enrolled in a public school.

2.      Each
School District shall consult annually with representatives from the private
schools to determine:

a.   Which children
will receive services;

b.   The special
education and related services to be provided;

c.   Where the
services will be delivered;

d.   How the
services will be provided; and

e.   How the
services will be evaluated.

3.      Each
School District shall make final decisions with respect to the services to be
provided to eligible children who are enrolled in private schools.  The services to be provided to such children
are those services that the School District has determined, through the
consultation process, it will make available.

4.      Each
School District shall assure that the providers of services to private school
children with disabilities meet the same standards as personnel providing
services in the public school.

5.      Each
School District shall be responsible for informing parent(s)/guardian(s) of a
private school child, that they may request mediation, initiate a due process
hearing or file a written complaint with the ISBE about matters relating to
child find, evaluation and eligibility determinations including the right to an
independent educational evaluation.

6.      By
December 1 of each year, each member School District will conduct a census of
the number of nonpublic school children eligible under IDEA, who may or may not
be receiving special education and related services.

LEGAL REF.:      20 U.S.C. §§ 1412
(State eligibility), 1412 (a)(7), 1413 (local educational agency eligibility).

34 C.F.R. §§ 300.349 (private school placement),
300.400 (applicability of §§ 300.400-300.402), 300.401 (responsibility of State
educational agency), 300.403 (placement of children by parent(s)/guardian(s) if
FAPE is at issue), 300.450 (definition of “private school children with
disabilities), 300.451 (child find for private school children with
disabilities), 300.455 (services provided), 300.457 (complaints).

105 ILCS 5/29-4, 14-6.01, 14-7.02.

23 Ill. Admin. Code §§ 226.330 (continuum of placement
options), 226.310 (related services), 226.320 (service to students living in
residential care facilities), 226.330 (placement by school district in
state-operated or nonpublic special education facilities), 226.340 (nonpublic
placements by parents), 226.350 (service to children in private schools).

 

Section
10. Administrative Procedure – Procedural Safeguards

A.        Procedural Safeguards Notice

  1. Written notification of the procedural
    safeguards available to the parent(s)/guardian(s) of a child with a disability
    shall be given to the parent(s)/guardian(s), at a minimum:

    1. Upon
      a child’s initial referral for evaluation;
    2. With
      each notification of an IEP conference;
    3. With
      each request for consent for reevaluation of a child; and
    4. Upon
      receipt of a request for a due process hearing as described herein.
    5. The procedural safeguards notice shall include a
      full explanation of all of the procedural safeguards relating to:

      1. Independent
        educational evaluation;
      2. Prior
        written notice;
      3. Parental
        consent;
      4. Access
        to educational records;
      5. The
        filing of written complaints with the ISBE, including a description of how to
        file a complaint and the timeline for doing so, as described herein;
      6. Procedures
        for children who are subject to placement in an interim alternative educational
        setting;
      7. Requirements
        for parent(s)/guardian(s)’ unilateral placement of children in private schools
        at public expense;
      8. Mediation;
      9. Due process hearings, including requirements for
        disclosure of evaluation results and recommendations;
      10. The child’s placement during pendency of due
        process proceedings;

k.   Civil actions;
and

l.    Attorney’s
fees.

 

B.        Prior Notice by School District

  1. The School District shall provide 10 calendar
    days prior written notice to the parent(s)/guardian(s) before proposing or
    refusing to initiate or change the identification, evaluation, or educational
    placement of, or the provision of free, appropriate public education to, a
    child.  If the notice is related to an
    action proposed by the School District that also requires parental consent, the
    School District may give notice at the same time as it requests consent.
  2. The notice required by this Section shall
    include:

a.   A description
of the action proposed or refused by the School District;

b.   An explanation
of why the School District proposes or refuses to take the action;

c.   A description
of any other options that the School District considered and the reason why
those options were rejected;

d.   A description
of each evaluation procedure, test, record, or report the School District used
as a basis for the proposed or refused action;

e.   A description
of any other factors that are relevant to the School District’s proposal or
refusal;

f.    A statement
that the parent(s)/guardian(s) of a child with a disability have protection under
the procedural safeguards of the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act,
Article 14 of the School Code of Illinois and their respective implementing
regulations and an indication of the means by which a description of those
procedural safeguards may be obtained;

g.   Sources for
parent(s)/guardian(s) to contact to obtain assistance and understanding of the
provisions of the IDEA, Article 14, and its respective implementing
regulations; and

h.   The
availability, upon request, of a list of free or low-cost legal and other
relevant services available locally to assist parent(s)/guardian(s) in
initiating an impartial due process hearing.

C.        Language of Notifications

1.      The notices required under
the “Procedural Safeguards Notice” and “Notice by School District” Sections
above shall be written in language understandable to the general public and
provided in the native language of the parent(s)/guardian(s) or other mode of
communication used by the parent, unless it is clearly not feasible to do so.

2.      If the native language or
other mode of communication of the parent(s)/guardian(s) is not a written
language, the School District shall take steps to ensure and document that the
notice is translated orally or by other means to the parent(s)/guardian(s) in his/her
native language or other mode of communication and that the
parent(s)/guardian(s) understands the content of the notice.

D.        Opportunity to Examine Records;
Parent(s)/guardian(s) Participation in Meetings

1.      The parent(s)/guardian(s) of
a child with a disability shall be afforded an opportunity to inspect and
review all education records with respect to the identification, evaluation,
and educational placement of and the provision of free, appropriate education
to the child.  The School District shall
insure that parent(s)/guardian(s) of children with disabilities have the
opportunity to participate in meetings with respect to the identification,
evaluation, and educational placement of, and the provision of free,
appropriate public education to, the child.
A meeting does not include informal or unscheduled conversations
involving School District personnel or other routine communications or
consultation between School District personnel, including preparatory activities
that school personnel engage in to develop a proposal or a response to a
parent’s proposal that will be discussed at an IEP meeting.

2.      Whenever a
meeting is to be held which a parent(s)/guardian(s) has a right to attend, the
following requirements shall apply:

a.   The School
District shall notify in writing the parent(s)/guardian(s) at least ten
calendar days prior to the proposed date of the meeting of the purpose of the
meeting, the proposed date, time, and place for the meeting, who will be in
attendance, and the parent(s)/guardian(s)’ right to invite other individuals
with knowledge or special expertise regarding the child.  If a parent(s)/guardian(s) indicates that the
proposed date or time is inconvenient, the School District shall make
reasonable efforts to accommodate the parent(s)/guardian(s)’ schedule;

b.   If neither
parent(s)/guardian(s) can attend, the School District shall use other methods
to attempt to secure at least one parent’s participation;

c.   A meeting may
be conducted without a parent(s)/guardian(s) in attendance if the School
District is unable to obtain the parent(s)/guardian(s)’ participation.  In this case, the School District shall
maintain a record of its attempt to arrange a mutually agreed-upon time and place;

e.   The School
District shall take whatever action is necessary to facilitate the
parent(s)/guardian(s)’ understanding of and participation in the meeting; and

f.    Any document
generated during the meeting shall be provided to the parent(s)/guardian(s)
upon request, unless applicable federal or State statute or federal regulation
requires its automatic provision without a request.

E.         Consent

1.      The School District shall
document that written parental consent is obtained prior to:

a.   Conducting an
initial evaluation;

b.   The initial
provision of special education and related services to a child;

c.   Conducting any
reevaluation;

d.   Using the
parent’s private insurance to pay for services required by the child’s IEP;

e.   Using an IFSP
instead of an IEP; or

f.    Disclosing
personally identifiable information about a child, consistent with the
requirements of federal and State law.

2.      Consent for a proposed
action is written agreement provided by a parent(s)/guardian(s) who has been
fully informed of all information relevant to the activity in his/her native
language or mode of communication.  The
district should attempt to ensure that the parent(s)/guardian(s) understand
that information and that the agreement is voluntary and may be revoked any
time prior to the completion of the activity for which consent was given.  Once the activity is completed and/or the
placement is in effect, consent may be revoked by requesting a due process
hearing.  If consent is revoked after an
evaluation has been completed, the School District may convene an IEP meeting
to consider the results.

3.      Parental consent is not
required before reviewing existing data as part of an evaluation or a
reevaluation or administering a test or evaluation that is administered to all
children unless parental consent is required of all children taking the test.

F.         Request
for Impartial Due Process Hearing

  1. A parent, a School District, or a child may
    request an impartial due process hearing for any reason relative to the
    identification, evaluation, or placement of, or the provision of free, appropriate
    public education, for a child who is or may be eligible for special education
    and related services.
  2. The School District shall provide the
    parent(s)/guardian(s) with a model due process request form designed by the
    ISBE in accordance with 34 C.F.R. § 300.507 (c)(1)(v)(3) or inform the
    parent(s)/guardian(s) that the request for a hearing must be submitted in
    writing and include the following information:

    1. The
      name and address of the child;
    2. The
      name of the school that the child attends;
    3. A
      description of the nature of the problem, including facts relating to such
      problem;
    4. The
      remedy being sought, if known and available to the parent(s)/guardian(s) at the
      time; and
    5. If
      known, whether the parent(s)/guardian(s) will be represented by legal counsel
      or an advocate.
    6. The Director of Special Education shall assist
      parent(s)/guardian(s) in taking whatever action is necessary to use the hearing
      process.
    7. If the School District initiates a hearing, the
      Superintendent shall file a written request with the ISBE and provide the
      parent(s)/guardian(s) with a copy of the request at the same time.  The School District’s written request shall
      contain the same information as that required for a parent’s request, as
      described in this Section.
    8. The School District shall not deny a request for
      a hearing that conforms with the requirements of this Section.
    9. The School District shall inform the
      parent(s)/guardian(s) in writing of the availability of mediation and of any
      free or low-cost legal services and other publicly-funded services available in
      the area if the parent(s)/guardian(s) requests the information or the
      parent(s)/guardian(s) or the School District initiates a hearing.
    10. The School District shall, within 5 days after
      its receipt of a request for a due process hearing, forward the request by
      certified mail or another means that provides written evidence of delivery to
      the ISBE’s Special Education Programs and Services Office.  The information transmitted with the request
      for a due process hearing shall include:

      1. The
        name, address, and telephone number of the child and of the parent, and of the
        person making the request if other than the child or parent;
      2. The
        date that the School District received the due process hearing request;
      3. The
        nature of the controversy to be resolved;
      4. The
        remedy being sought;
      5. The
        primary language spoken by the parent(s)/guardian(s) and the child; and
      6. A
        copy of the request.
      7. The School District shall send to the
        parent(s)/guardian(s) by certified mail or another means providing written
        evidence of delivery, a copy of the request and all attachments sent to the
        ISBE.
      8. During the pendency of any administrative or
        judicial proceeding initiated pursuant to this Section, except as provided
        below, unless the School District and the parent(s)/guardian(s) of the child
        agree otherwise, the child shall remain in his/her current educational
        placement.  If the hearing involves the
        initial admission of the child to the public school, the child must be placed
        in the public school, with the parent’s consent, until the completion of all
        the proceedings.  If the decision of the
        hearing officer agrees with the parent(s)/guardian(s) that a change of
        placement is appropriate, that placement shall be treated as agreement between
        the State or School District and the parent(s)/guardian(s) for purposes of this
        Section.
      9. School personnel have the authority to change
        the current educational placement of a child with a disability:
      10. For
        not more than 10 consecutive school days for any violation of school rules, and
        additional removals of not more than 10 consecutive school days in that same
        school year for separate incidents of misconduct (as long as those removals do
        not constitute a change of placement as defined the IDEA and related federal
        and State regulations); and
      11. To
        an appropriate interim alternative educational setting for the same amount of
        time that a child without a disability would be subject to discipline, but for
        not more than 45 calendar days, if:

(1)   The
child carries a weapon to school or to a school function,

(2)   The
child knowingly possesses or uses illegal drugs or sells or solicits the sale
of a controlled substance while at school or at a school function, or

(3)   Ordered
by a hearing officer in accordance with the expedited hearing procedures set
forth below.

  1. The School District will fully cooperate with
    the timelines set forth by the hearing officer to ensure that the hearing
    process is completed within 45 calendar days from the date the request for a
    hearing was received.
  2. The parent(s)/guardian(s) or the School District
    may appeal the due process hearing findings and decision, within 120 calendar
    days from the date the decision was mailed to the parties, by commencing a
    civil action in any court of competent jurisdiction.
  3. The School District will arrange for an
    electronic verbatim record of the hearing to be made and, upon request, the
    School District will make available to the parent(s)/guardian(s), at no cost, a
    copy of the record of the hearing.  The
    School District shall seek reimbursement from the ISBE for one-half the cost of
    providing these copies.

G.        Expedited
Due Process Hearings

1.      The School District may
request an expedited hearing if school personnel maintain that it is dangerous
for the child to be in the current placement.

2.      The parent(s)/guardian(s) or
child if he or she is at least 18 years of age or emancipated may request an
expedited hearing if there is disagreement with regard to:

a.   The School District’s
determination that a child’s behavior was not a manifestation of his/her
disability;

b.   The decision of the School
District to move the child to an interim alternative educational setting, or

c.   The interim alternative
educational setting selected.

3.      When requesting an expedited
hearing the requesting party must provide the following:

a.   Name of legal
counsel if the party is represented by counsel or intends to retain counsel;

b.   Matters in
dispute and specific relief sought;

c.   Names of all
witnesses to be called to testify at the hearing; and

d.   Relevant
documents.

4.      No later than two days prior
to the hearing, both parties involved in the expedited hearing must disclose to
the hearing officer and to each other any evidence, which is intended to be
submitted into the hearing record.

H.        Mediation

1.      The purpose of mediation is
to attempt to informally resolve disputes regarding the identification,
evaluation, or placement of, or the provision of free, appropriate public
education to, a child.  The School
District shall inform parent(s)/guardian(s), at least whenever a due process
hearing is requested, that the ISBE offers a process of mediation that may be
used to resolve such disputes.

2.      The ISBE’s Special Education
Programs and Services office shall appoint a trained impartial mediator upon
the request of the parent(s)/guardian(s) or the School District.  Mediation sessions shall be scheduled in a