Topic Areas: Dispute Resolution, State Complaints
January 2, 2017 to Anonymous—Due Process Hearings—state education agency (SEA) as a partyPDF
January 2, 2017 to Anonymous—Due Process Hearings—state education agency (SEA) as a party
UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION OFFICE OF SPECIAL EDUCATION AND REHABILITATIVE SERVICES January 2, 2017 REDACTED Dear XXXXXX: This letter responds to your August 29, 2016 electronic mail (email) correspondence to Rebecca Walawender, Deputy Director, Monitoring and State Improvement Planning Division, Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP). 1 You have asked whether it is permissible for a parent to f ile a due process complaint against a State educational agency (SEA). We note that you raise this question in connection with a due process complaint filed under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act’s (IDEA’s) due process procedures (34 CFR §§300.507- 300.516 and 300.532- 300.533). Generally, it is not OSEP’s practice to comment on the merits or factual accuracy of a due process complaint. However, we will respond to your general question about whether a parent may file a due process complaint agai nst an SEA. OSEP stated in its February 15, 2012 verification letter to the State of New Mexico that a parent may file a due process complaint against an SEA and the hearing officer has the authority to determine, based on the individual facts and circums tances in the case, whether the SEA is a proper party to the due process hearing. This document is available at: http://www2.ed.gov/fund/data/report/idea/partbvvltr/inde x.html#nm . This issue is also addressed in the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services’ Questions and Answers on IDEA Part B Dispute Resolution Procedures (July 23, 2013), Question C -17, which states: “[u]nder the IDEA, hearing officers ha ve complete authority to determine the sufficiency of all due process complaints filed and to determine jurisdiction of issues raised in due process complaints consistent with 34 CFR §§300.508(d) and 300.513.” This document is available at: https://www2.ed.gov/policy/speced/guid/idea/memosdcltrs/acccombinedose rsdisputeresolutionqa finalmemo-7- 23- 13.pdf . A party aggrieved by the hearing officer’s decision may request a State - level review, if applicable, or bring a civil action in an appropriate State or Federal court. See 34 CFR §§300.514 and 300.516. Based on section 607(e) of the IDEA, we are informing you that our response is provided as informal guidance and is not legally binding, but represents an interpretation by the U.S. Department of Education of the IDEA in the context of the specific facts presented. 1 We note that OSEP provided a response to your question via email on October 24, 2016. OSEP issues this letter to provide broader dissemination of the information shared in that response. 400 MARYLAND AVE., S.W. WASHINGTON, D.C. 20202-2600 www.ed.gov The Department of Education’s mission is to promote student achievement and prepar ation for global competiveness by fostering educational excellence and ensuring equal access.
Addresses whether a parent may file a due process complaint against a State Educational Agency.
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Last modified on October 24, 2023