Education

Draft Procedural Safeguards

The Kentucky Department of Education is seeking review of its draft of the Procedural Safeguards manual. Following is the purpose and contents of the document. The KDE would like as many people as possible to review the 13-page document. If you are interested in reviewing it, contact Melanie Tyner-Wilson at moc.loanull@osliwrenyT to get a copy.

Purpose

This procedural safeguards notice is intended to meet the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) requirements to fully explain in writing the procedural safeguards available under the IDEA (20 U.S.C. 1415(d)(2)). As a parent of a child who may have disabilities and need special education and related services, you have certain protections guaranteed by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). The IDEA is a federal law and one purpose of the IDEA is to make sure that all children with disabilities have available a free appropriate public education (FAPE) that includes special education and related services designed to meet their unique needs.

Each public school district must use procedural safeguards to make sure that the rights of a child with a disability are protected.

Contents

  • When will I be notified and may I participate in meetings?
  • Is my consent required?
  • May I see my child’s education records?
  • What is an “independent” educational evaluation?
  • May I file complaints?
  • What is mediation?
  • What is required in a due process hearing?
  • May I appeal the hearing officer’s decision?
  • What if I disagree with the appeal decision?
  • What about my attorney’s fees?
  • What is my child’s placement (“stay put”) during the due process proceedings?
  • Is my child subject to placement in an “interim alternative educational setting”?
  • May I enroll my child in a private school at public expense?
  • What happens when my child reaches the “age of majority?”

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Your Protection Against Retaliation

Many parents have a natural response that they do not want to make a complaint and make the school mad at them. If your current relationship with your school is working for you and your child, great. Keep it up.

But if you are going to have to make complaints, make them in writing at the proper level. In making such a complaint you are engaged in an activity that is “protected” under the Americans with Disabilities Act (and Section 504 and the IDEA).

Our national history of people standing up for their civil rights, or for the civil rights of others, has been one of retaliation by those in power. The Congress recognized this in passing the ADA and consequently when you are engaged in the “protected activity” of advocacy for your child, for yourself, or for others under these federal acts, you have a right against “retaliation,” “coercion,” “threats,” “intimidation” or “interference” with your advocacy efforts.

Ask your school in writing for their written policies on this and for the in-service that they have conducted with staff, particularly administrators and teachers, in regard to your rights to advocate without facing retaliation.

If you feel you have been retaliated against, immediately address that in writing as part of your complaint.

One of your complaint mechanisms should be the grievance procedures that your school must have established under Section 504 and the ADA. Write your school for a copy of those and try to make them work.