39 | Case Law (cont.)

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Case 7

Student:  Middle school student with Autism.  Parent asked for an AT Assessment in 2013 and 2014.

School’s Participation:  AT Assessment in 2013 determined AT not needed but made recommendations for a written agenda, social stories and visual supports for requesting help and communicating emotions, and a text to speech program.  No meeting was held with the parent to discuss the AT Assessment at that time.  In 2014 team reviewed prior assessment and concluded AT still not needed.  In 2015 IEP team determined no need for AT or assessment.  In 2016 IEP did not mention AT.

Problem:  In 2016 goals were essentially the same as in previous year.  The school did not fully address the need for AT that could have been appropriate for and beneficial for the student in overcoming weaknesses in reading, vocabulary, and written expression.

Results: Hearing officer found that IEP was not designed to provide meaningful educational benefit and school was in violation of FAPE.

Penn Hills School District, 117 LRP 24165 (SEA PA 04/15/17)

Case 8

Student: Student with emotional disturbance and specific learning disability.

School’s Participation:  School utilized the Georgia Project for AT Protocol to assess AT needs.  Results were the recommendation of the use of computers, speaking dictionary, Co:Writer, and WriteOutloud.

Problem: Parent requested Independent Educational Evaluation in 7 categories, including AT.  District filed due process to defend its evaluations.

Results:  Hearing officer found that the evaluator used a variety of tools and assessments, the IEP team implemented her suggestions, and the resulting plan was designed to provide meaningful educational benefit.

B.G. v. City of Chicago School District 299, 69 IDELR 177 (N.D. III 2017)

Case 9

Student:  Middle school student with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

School’s Participation: IEP included implementation of several AT devices.

Problem: Mother requested Dragon software be included.  School disagreed with reasoning that voice-to-text would be difficult in the classroom environment.  Mother filed due process.

Results:  Hearing officer found that the IEP team repeatedly considered and responded to the student’s need for technology devices and services.  The petitioner introduced insufficient evidence to merit the conclusion that the district’s provision of AT was inadequate.

Cobb County School District, 9 GASLD 71 (SEA GA 2017)