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PROCEDURAL SAFEGUARDS NOTICE

I.  GENERAL INFORMATION

A.  WHO IS A PARENT? (34 CFR §300.30)

THIS SECTION DESCRIBES WHO IS ABLE TO ACT AS A PARENT FOR PURPOSES OF SPECIAL EDUCATION DECISION MAKING.

A parent is a biological or adoptive parents of a child; a foster parent; a guardian generally authorized to act as the child’s parent, or authorized to make educational decision for the child; an individual acting in the place of a biological or adoptive parent (including a grandparent, stepparent, or other relative) with whom the child lives, or an individual who is legally responsible for the child’s welfare; or a surrogate parent.

A surrogate parent must be appointed when no parent can be identified; the public agency, after reasonable efforts, cannot locate a parents; the child is a ward of the State under the laws of Pennsylvania, or the child in an unaccompanied homeless youth as defined by the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, 42 U.S.C. Sec. 11434a(6). Public agencies must ensure that a person selected as a surrogate parent is not an employee of the SEA, the LEA or any other agency that is involved in the education or care of the child; has no personal or professional interest that conflicts with the interest of the child the surrogate parent represents; and has knowledge and skills that ensure adequate representation of the child. The surrogate parent may represent the child in all matters relating to the identification, evaluation, and educational placement of the child and the provision of FAPE to the child. The public agency must make reasonable efforts to ensure the assignment of surrogate parent not more than 30 days after a public agency determines that the child needs a surrogate parent.

B.  WHAT IS PRIOR WRITTEN NOTICE? (34 CFR §300.503)

THIS SECTION EXPLAINS WHAT, HOW, AND WHEN AN LEA MUST TELL YOU ABOUT ACTIONS IT PROPOSES OR REFUSES TO TAKE.

1.  When Notice Is Required

Your local education agency (LEA) – the entity responsible for providing a free appropriate public education to your child – must notify you in writing whenever it:

a.

Proposes to initiate or to change the identification, evaluation, or educational placement of your child, or the provision of a free appropriate public education (FAPE) to your child; or

b.

Refuses to initiate or to change the identification, evaluation, or educational placement of your child, or the provision of FAPE to your child.

c.

Change of placement for disciplinary reasons.

d.

Due process hearing, or an expedited due process hearing, initiated by LEA.

e.

Refusal of LEA to agree to an independent educational evaluation (IEE) at public expense.

In Pennsylvania, prior written notice is provided by means of a LEA Prior Written Notice Form/Notice of Recommended Educational Placement. You should be given reasonable notice of this proposal or refusal so that if you do not agree with the LEA you may take appropriate action. Reasonable Notice means ten days.

2.

Content of notice

The prior written notice must:

1.

Describe the action that your LEA proposes or refuses to take;

2.

Explain why your LEA is proposing or refusing to take the action;

3.

Describe each evaluation procedure, assessment, record, or report your LEA used in deciding to propose or refuse the action;

4.

Include a statement that you have protections under the procedural safeguards provisions in Part B of IDEA;

5.

Tell how you can obtain a description of the procedural safeguards if the action that your LEA is proposing or refusing is not an initial referral for evaluation;

6.

Include resources for you to contact for help in understanding Part B of the IDEA;

7.

Describe any other choices that your child’s IEP Team considered and the reasons why those choices were rejected; and

8.

Provide a description of other reasons why your LEA proposed or refused the action.

1July 2008 Revisions

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