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Mission:
Rio Blanco BOCES is committed to partnering with our member district to support and deliver educational and instructional programs to enable each district to meet the individual needs and unique priorities of the students, parents, staff and community we serve.

Section IV

Procedural Safeguards

 

__________________________________________________________________________________________

 

The plan provides that the local administrative unit has procedural safeguards which meet federal regulations relating to due process procedures for parents and children.  300.237, 300.500-300515

__________________________________________________________________________________________

 

A.      Prior Notice And Parental Consent

__________________________________________________________________________________________

 

Prior Written Notice and Written Consent  6.02  

 

Each administrative unit or eligible facility shall provide prior written notice to parent(s) a

reasonable time before the unit/facility:  6.02(1)

 

  • proposes to or refuses to initiate or change the identification, evaluation or educational program of the child or the provision of a free appropriate public education to the child, or  6.02(1)(a)
  • proposes to terminate services due to graduation with a regular high school diploma, or  6.02(1)(b)
  • proposes to terminate services due to the student exceeding the age of eligibility as defined in these Rules, or  6.02(1)(c)
  • proposes to transfer rights regarding educational records to the student at the age of 18 (in this situation, both the parents and the student shall be notified).  6.02(1)(d)

 

Each administrative unit shall obtain written informed consent from the parent(s) prior to conducting assessments in accordance with Section 4.01(3)(c) and 4.01(3)(j) of these Rules and prior to initial placement of the child with disabilities into special education.  6.02(2)

 

Written notice shall be communicated in the native language of the child's parents.  6.02(3)

__________________________________________________________________________________________

 

BOCES Policy/Focus

In order to ensure that parents of children with disabilities or children with disabilities themselves have an opportunity to participate in the educational decision making process, Rio Blanco BOCES assures the provision of written prior notice and written consent when it proposes to, or refuses to, initiate or change the identification, evaluation, or educational placement of the child or the provision of a free appropriate public education to the child.

 

Procedures

 

Written Prior Notice

1.         Written prior notice shall include:

 

a.   a full explanation of all of the procedural safeguards available to the parents,

b.   a description of the action proposed or refused by the unit, an explanation of why it proposes or refuses to take the action, and a description of any options it considered and the reasons why those options were rejected, and

c.   a description of each evaluation procedure, test, record, or report the unit used as a basis for the proposal or refusal.

 

2.         Written prior notice shall be written in language understandable to the general public,   and provided in the native language of the parents or other mode of communication used by the parent, unless it is clearly not feasible to do so.

3.         If the native language or other mode of communication of the parent is not a written      language, the district/unit shall take steps to insure that:

 

a.   the notice is translated orally or by other means to the parent in his or her native language or other mode of communication,

b.   the parent understands the content of the notice, and

c.   there is written documentation of the above.

 

4.         The written notice will be provided not later than ten school days prior to any action to    insure that the parents have an opportunity to agree or object to the action proposed or refused.

 

5.         Written notice must be given prior to:

 

a.   conducting initial assessment/evaluation and triennial reassessment of individually administered tests of intelligence.  At this time, parents must be notified of their right to obtain an independent educational evaluation. (see Procedural Safeguards)

b.   staffing/IEP meeting, annual reviews and triennial reviews

c.   initial placement of child with a disability into special educational (instructional or related) services

d.   any changes in the child's special education program (the environment in which the child receives the special educational services) and the specific special (instruction and related) services.

 

Written Parent Consent

 

1.         Written parent consent means that:

 

a.   the parent has been fully informed of all information relevant to the activity for which consent is sought, in his or her native language, or other mode of communication.

b.   the parent understands and agrees in writing to the carrying out of the activity for which his or her consent is sought, and the consent describes that activity and lists the records (if any) which will be released and to whom, and

c.   the parent understands that the granting of consent is voluntary on the part of the parent and may be revoked at any time.

 

2.         Parental consent must be obtained before:

 

a.   conducting initial assessment/evaluation.

b.   initial placement of a child with a disability into special educational (instructional or related) services.  Prior to placement of a child into special education services,  a representative of the unit must inform parents in writing of the results of the staffing/IEP meeting, of their right to access all school records that pertain to their child, of procedures for regular review, and of appeal procedures.

 

3.         If the parent refuses to give permission for assessment or placement or fails to respond             after reasonable efforts have been made by the unit, and the local school board believes that the child may be significantly harmed by the absence of special education      services, the local school board may elect to have the Department of Social Services   institute court dependency proceedings to obtain authorization for assessment of the        child.

 

4.         If the child's parent/guardian is unknown or unavailable, the special education director selects an educational surrogate parent from a list of names of qualified individuals.  The special education director then contacts CDE and CDE appoints educational surrogate parents for the purpose of consenting or refusing to consent to assessment and IEP development, or objecting to placement of the child into special education, as well as protecting the child's interest.

 

 

 

 

 

B.  Surrogate Parents

______________________________________________________________________________________

 

The public agency ensures that the rights of a child are protected when no parent can be identified, when, after reasonable efforts, the agency cannot discover the whereabouts of a parent, or the child is a ward of the State.  300.514(a)

 

The public agency determines whether a child needs a surrogate parent and assigns a surrogate parent to the child, when needed.  300.514(b)

 

The public agency selects a surrogate parent, as permitted under State law, and selects a person who has no interest that conflicts with the interest of the child, has knowledge and skills that ensure adequate representation of the child, and is not an employee of the agency.  300.514(c)(d)

 

The surrogate parent represents the child in all matters relating to the identification, evaluation, and educational placement of the child and the provision of a free appropriate public education to the child.  300.514(e)

__________________________________________________________________________________________

 

 

 

BOCES Policy/Focus

Rio Blanco BOCES ensures that the rights of a child are protected when no parent can be identified or located or when the child is a ward of the State, and that 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 a free appropriate public education to the child.

 

Procedures

 

 

1.   For any student, from birth to age 21, who has a disability or is suspected of having a disability, and for whom no parent can be identified after reasonable efforts, an educational surrogate parent shall be selected by the administrative unit of residence and subsequently appointed by CDE to represent the student in all educational decision making processes pertaining to the identification, evaluation and educational placement of the child.

 

2     Examples of situations in which a child is entitled to an educational surrogate parent include:

 

·         the whereabouts of a parent cannot be discovered

·         parental rights have been terminated or relinquished,

·         the court has ordered that the parents cannot make decisions regarding

      the child’s education

·         the parents are deceased and no guardian has been appointed.

 

3     It is not appropriate to appoint an educational surrogate parent:

 

·         based solely on the fact that the parents are incarcerated;

·         when the parents reside outside of Colorado;  or

·         when the student is a legally emancipated minor. 

 

4.  An educational surrogate parent shall not be an employee of any agency involved in                      the education or care of the child.  Neither the child’s department of social/human services case worker/case manager nor the child’s DYC case manager may sign as the parent in connection with special education procedures, but such individuals have valuable input and should be included in the IEP process.

 

5.  A guardian ad litem (GAL) may serve as the educational surrogate parent, provided that the court has assigned the GAL the responsibility for educational decision-making and such assignment is established in a written order of the court.

 

C.      Protection In Evaluation Procedures

            (see policy and procedures included in Section III, Part C, Assessment Process)

 

 

D.      Independent Educational Evaluation

__________________________________________________________________________________________

 

Parents have the right to obtain an independent educational evaluation of the child...at public expense, if the evaluation conducted by the agency is officially determined inappropriate. 300.503(a),(b)

 

Parents are provided, on request, information about where an independent educational evaluation may be obtained.  300.503(a)(2)

 

If an independent educational evaluation is obtained, at public or private expense, the information is considered as part of the assessment.  300.503(c)

 

When records from an independent assessment are used, written parental consent for their use is obtained.

__________________________________________________________________________________________

 

BOCES Policy/Focus

Rio Blanco BOCES ensures that parents have the right to an independent educational evaluation at public expense if they disagree with an evaluation obtained by the unit for their child.

 

Procedures

 

1.         The Director of Special Education will provide to parents, on request, information about             where an independent educational evaluation (conducted by a qualified examiner who            is not employed by the district/unit) may be obtained.

 

2.         Should the parent request an independent evaluation, the BOCES, may initiate a          hearing to show that its evaluation is appropriate.  If the final decision is that the         evaluation is appropriate, the parent still has the right to an independent educational          evaluation, but not at public expense.

 

3.         If the parent obtains an independent educational evaluation at either public or private   expense, the results of the evaluation will be considered by the BOCES as part of the             assessment/determination of disability process, so long as the location of the evaluation          and the qualifications of the examiner meet the same criteria that the district uses. (see         Section III, Part C. Assessment Process.)

 

E.      Least Restrictive Environment

            (see Policy and Procedures included in Section II, Part C, Least Restrictive    Environment)

 

F.      Impartial Due Process Hearing

__________________________________________________________________________________________

 

Due Process Hearings  6.03

 

Each administrative unit shall adopt and implement procedures for conducting due process hearings when there is disagreement regarding any of the following matters: 6.03(1)

 

·         Determination of eligibility for services under ECEA.  6.03(1)(a)

  • Placement of a child into an educational program.  6.03(1)(b)
  • Failure to obtain written parental consent prior to conducting an initial assessment and/or prior to providing a child with disabilities initial special education services.  6.03(1)(c)
  • The provision of a free appropriate public education.  6.03(1)(d)

 

A parent, administrative unit, or a local school board that is a member of an administrative unit

may request a due process hearing on any matter set forth above.  6.03(2)

 

Disclosure of evaluations and recommendations.  6.03(2)(a)

 

At least 5 business days (two business days for an expedited hearing) prior to the hearing, all evaluations completed by that date, and recommendations based on those evaluations that will be used at the hearing, must be disclosed to all parties.  6.03(2)(a)(i)      

 

The hearing officer may prevent any party that fails to comply with prior disclosure from introducing the relevant evaluation or recommendation at the hearing without the consent of the other party.  6.03(2)(a)(ii)     

 

Not later that 45 days after receipt of a written request for a hearing, a final decision must be reached and a copy of that decision mailed to the parents, administrative unit and local board of education unless the timeline is appropriately extended.  6.03(2)(b)

 

Expedited due process hearings.  6.03(2)(c)

 

An expedited due process hearing may be requested by a parent when there is a disagreement regarding a manifestation determination or an interim alternative educational placement; or by an administrative unit when it maintains that it is dangerous for the child to be in the current placement. 6.03(2)(c)(i)

Hearing officers for expedited due process hearings are those referenced in 6.03(7) and 6.03(8) of these Rules.  6.03(2)(c)(ii)

Request for hearing by parent.  6.03(3)

 

 

Hearings shall be initiated by a parent submitting a written request to the director of special education of an administrative unit or district that is a member of an administrative unit. The written request shall include:  6.03(3)(a)

 

  • the name of the child, the address of the residence of the child, and the name of the school the child is attending;  6.03(3)(a)(i)    
  • a description of the nature of the problem, including relevant facts;  6.03(3)(a)(ii)
  • a proposed resolution of the problem to the extent known and available to the parent(s) at the time; and  6.03(3)(a)(iii)

 

A parent’s right to a due process hearing shall not be delayed or denied for failing to provide the above information.  6.03(3)(a)(iv)

Upon receipt of request, within ten calendar days or the first business day after the tenth day, the hearing officer shall be designated according to the following procedures:  6.03(3)(b)

 

  • The district shall notify the special education director or designee of the administrative unit of a request for hearing.  6.03(3)(b)(i)
  • The district or administrative unit shall telephone the Department of Education with a request for available hearing officers and confirm the request in writing accompanied by a copy of the request for the due process hearing.  6.03(3)(b)(ii)

 

  • The Department of Education shall provide by telephone to each party within four calendar days the names of three available hearing officers and will confirm the names in writing accompanied by biographical information about the available hearing officers.  6.03(3)(b)(iii)
  • The parent shall notify the district or administrative unit of the name of the individual that the parent eliminates from the list of three.  This action shall occur so as to allow the district or administrative unit at least two days out of the total of ten days during which to strike another one of the remaining two names and to select the hearing officer.  6.03(3)(b)(iv)
  • The district or administrative unit shall notify the parent and the Department of Education as to whom was selected.  The Department of Education will notify the hearing officer of his/her selection.  If such notification is by telephone it must be confirmed in writing.  6.03(3)(b)(v)

 

For expedited due process hearings, the hearing officer shall be appointed by the Colorado Department of Education from the registry of hearing officers on a rotating basis depending on availability.  6.03(3)(b)(vi)

 

If either the district, administrative unit or parent fails to eliminate a name from the hearing officer list in a timely manner the other party will notify the Department of Education which will determine if there is unwarranted delay.  The Department of Education will then allow the party not responsible for the delay to select the hearing officer.  If such notification is by telephone it must be confirmed in writing.  6.03(3)(c)

 

Request for a hearing by an administrative unit or district that is a member of an administrative unit.  6.03(4)

 

Hearings shall be initiated by an administrative unit or district submitting a written request to the Department of Education, Special Education Services Unit and the parent (and the administrative unit if a member district is making the request).  The 45 day timeline commences upon receipt of the request by the Department of Education.  6.03(4)(a)

 

Within ten calendar days or the first business day after the tenth day, a hearing officer shall be designated according to the following procedures:  6.03(4)(b)

 

  • The Department of Education shall provide by telephone to each party within four calendar days the names of three available hearing officers and will confirm the names in writing accompanied by biographical information about the available hearing officers.  6.03(4)(b)(i)
  • The requesting party shall notify the parent of the name of the individual that it eliminates from the list of three.  This action shall occur so as to allow the parent at least two days out the total of ten days during which to strike another one of the remaining two names and to select the hearing officer.  6.03(4)(b)(ii)
  • The parent shall notify the district or administrative unit of the name the parent eliminates.  6.03(4)(b)(iii)

·         The district or administrative unit shall notify the Department of Education and the Department of Education will notify the hearing officer of his/her selection.  If such notification is by telephone it must be confirmed in writing.  6.03(4)(b)(iv)

 

For expedited due process hearings, the hearing officer shall be appointed by the Colorado Department of Education from the registry of hearing officers on a rotating basis depending on availability.  6.03(4)(b)(v)

 

If either the district, administrative unit or parent fails to eliminate a name from the hearing officer list in a timely manner the other party will notify the Department of Education which will determine if there is unwarranted delay.  The Department of Education will then allow the party not responsible for the delay to select the hearing officer.  If such notification is by telephone it must be confirmed in writing.  6.03(4)(c)

 

Request for a hearing by a child with disabilities. 

 

A child with disabilities or suspected of having a disability, who is 18 years of age, and has not been declared incompetent, may request a hearing.  In such instances the procedures described in Section 6.03 (3) of these Rules shall apply.

 

Due process hearing procedures.  6.03(6)

 

The hearing officer may, at the request of either party, grant specific extensions of the time beyond the 45 day timeline (except in an expedited due process hearing) in which to reach a final decision and mail a copy of the decision to the parties.  6.03(6)(b)

 

Any party to a hearing has the right to:  6.03(6)(c)

 

Be accompanied and advised by counsel and by individuals with special knowledge and training with respect to problems of children with disabilities.  6.03(6)(c)(i)

 

  • Present evidence (including the results of an evaluation obtained at private expense) and confront and cross-examine witnesses.  6.03(6)(c)(ii)
  • Request the hearing officer to secure subpoenas pursuant to Section 6.03(6)(a)(iv) of these Rules, to compel the attendance of witnesses.  6.03(6)(c)(iii)
  • Prohibit the introduction of any evidence, either through witnesses or documents, at the hearing if the witness has not been identified or the document has not been disclosed at least five business days before the hearing (two business days for an expedited hearing).  6.03(6)(c)(iv)
  • Obtain a written or, at the option of the parent, electronic verbatim record of the hearing.  The cost for transcription of the record of the hearing is the responsibility of the administrative unit and shall be at no cost to the parent.  6.03(6)(c)(v)
  • Obtain a written or electronic copy of the findings of fact and decision, at no cost.  6.03(6)(c)(vi)

 

Right to appeal decision of impartial hearing officer.  6.03(9)

 

Either party may obtain state level review of the decision of the impartial hearing officer

including a decision rendered in an expedited due process hearing.  The state level

review shall be conducted on behalf of the Commissioner of Education by an

administrative law judge of the Colorado State Government, General Support Services,

Division of Administrative Hearings.

 

Procedure for appealing decision of impartial hearing officer.  6.03(10) 

 

Any party who seeks to appeal the decision of an impartial hearing officer shall file with or mail to the Division of Administrative Hearings within 30 days after receipt of the impartial hearing officer's decision:  6.03(10)(a)

 

·         A notice of appeal.  6.03(10)(a)(i)

  • A designation of the transcript.  A party may designate a portion of the tape recorded record or arrange for a transcript of the tape recorded record.  6.03(10)(a)(ii)

 

 

Simultaneously with mailing or filing the notice of appeal and designation of transcript with the

Division of Administrative Hearings, the appealing party shall mail copies of these documents

to the Department of Education and to all other parties in the proceeding before the impartial

hearing officer at their last known addresses.  6.03(10)(b)

 

Within five days of receipt of a notice of appeal, any other party may file a cross appeal.

 

The notice of appeal shall contain the following:  6.03(10)(c)

 

  • The caption of the case, including case number and names of all parties.  6.03(10)(c)(i)
  • The party or parties initiating the appeal.  6.03(10)(c)(ii)
  • A brief description of the nature of the case and the order being appealed.  6.03(10)(c)(iii)
  • A list of the issues to be raised on appeal.  6.03(10)(c)(iv)
  • A copy of the findings of fact and decision of the impartial hearing officer being appealed.  6.03(10)(c)(v)
  • A certificate of service showing the date the copy of the notice of appeal was mailed to the Department of Education and to all parties in the proceeding before the impartial hearing officer.  All subsequent documents and pleadings filed with the Division of Administrative Hearings shall similarly contain a certificate of service showing that a copy was mailed to all parties.  6.03(10)(c)(vi)

 

A notice of cross appeal shall contain those items listed in 6.03(10)(c)(i-iv) above along with a certificate of service.  6.03(10)(d)

 

At the time the notice of appeal is filed or mailed, the appealing party shall also file with or mail to the Division of Administrative Hearings either a statement that no transcript is necessary for the appeal and a review of the tape recorded record is sufficient or a designation of all portions of the transcript necessary for resolution of the appeal.  No transcript is required if the issues on appeal are limited to pure questions of law.  6.03(10)(e)

 

Within five days after the receipt of the notice of appeal and designation of transcript or tape recording, the other party may file with the Division of Administrative Hearings a designation of any additional portions of the transcript which the party believes are necessary for resolution of the appeal.  6.03(10)(f)

 

Whichever party appeals the decision shall insure that such transcript is filed with the Division of Administrative Hearings within 15 days of the date the notice of appeal is mailed or filed.  6.03(10)(g)

 

Whichever party appeals the decision shall, simultaneously with filing or mailing the notice of appeal and designation of record, contact the court reporter and order the transcript or arrange for the transcription of a tape recorded record or submit the entire tape recorded record.  6.03(10)(g)(i)

 

Immediately upon filing any additional designations pursuant to Section 6.03(10)(f) of these Rules, any party submitting designations shall order from the court reporter the transcript or arrange for transcription in the case of a tape recorded record and shall insure that such transcript is filed with the Division of Administrative Hearings within 15 days, or submit the entire tape recording.  6.03(10)(g)(ii)

 

A party requesting a written transcript is responsible for paying for it.  A party requesting parts of a written transcript by filing an additional designation is responsible to pay for those portions of the transcript.  Parent(s) shall not be required to pay for the cost of a copy of the tape recorded record for an appeal.   The transcript or portions thereof shall be made available to any party at reasonable times for inspection or copying at the copier's expense.  6.03(10)(g)(iii)

 

Upon receipt of the notice of appeal, the administrative law judge assigned to hear the appeal shall direct the impartial hearing officer to certify and transmit to the administrative law judge, within seven days, all pleadings and documents filed with the impartial hearing officer, all exhibits and the decision of the impartial hearing officer.  6.03(10)(h)

 

The decision made upon a state level review shall be final except that either party has the right to bring civil action in an appropriate court of law, either federal or state.  In any civil action brought under this section, the court receives the records of the administrative proceedings from the hearing officer, hears additional evidence at the request of a party, bases its decision on the preponderance of the evidence, and grants the relief that the court determines to be appropriate.  6.03(12) 

 

Child’s status during proceedings.  6.03(14)

 

During the pendency of any due process hearing or appeal, unless the administrative unit and the parents agree otherwise, the child shall remain in his or her current educational placement.  6.03(14)(a)

 

If the decision of a hearing officer in a due process hearing, or an administrative law judge in an appeal, agrees with the child’s parents that a change of placement is appropriate, that placement shall be treated as an agreement between the administrative unit and the parents for purposes of paragraph (a) above.  6.03(14)(b)

 

If a parent requests a hearing or an appeal of a disciplinary action; or to challenge the interim alternative educational setting; or the manifestation determination; the child shall remain in the interim alternative educational setting pending the decision of the hearing officer or until the expiration of the time period for the interim alternative educational placement, whichever comes first, unless the parent and the administrative unit agree otherwise.  6.03(14)(c)

__________________________________________________________________________________________

 

BOCES Policy/Focus

Rio Blanco BOCES ensures that an impartial due process hearing may be initiated by a parent or the BOCES on any of the matters described in Section IV. Procedural Safeguards.  Part A. Prior Notice and Parental Consent.  When either party requests a hearing, in writing, they shall be afforded the opportunity to have a hearing and a decision mailed to each of the parties within forty-five days of receipt of the request.

 

Procedures

 

1.         Upon receipt of the written request for hearing, the Director of Special Education will             immediately notify the State Department of Education, Special Services Unit.  The Unit             will then notify the Director, by phone, of three hearing officers from the approved list of       trained and qualified hearing officers, who have indicated their availability within the forty-five day period.  (The Department will follow up by providing this list to the involved           parties by certified mail.)

 

2.         The Director will immediately provide to the parents and/or legal counsel, the list of        available hearing officers.

 

3.      The hearing officer will be selected by:  (a) the respondent party eliminating one from    the list, (b) the petitioning party eliminating one from the list, and (c) the remaining name     appointed.

 

4.         Within ten school days after receipt of the written request for hearing, the Director of      Special Education will identify for the parent any free or low cost legal or relevant services available.  (This information is available even when a hearing has not been requested.)

 

5.         Within at least ten school days prior to the date of the hearing, the parties or their            respective representatives will be given notice:

 

a.   of the time and place of the hearing

b.   that they may bring legal counsel and/or individuals with special knowledge or training with respect to the problems of children with disabilities and cross examine witnesses at no expense to the BOCES,

c.   that the BOCES, at the parent's request, shall assure that appropriate school personnel be present,

d.   that they may review and request copies, at their own expense of all school records concerning the subject/child at any time prior to the hearing (also see next Section, G.  Confidentiality of Information),

e.   that a written or electronic verbatim account of the hearing shall be kept.

 

6.         Any party to the hearing will have the right to:

 

a.   present evidence, confront and cross examine and compel the attendance of witnesses,

b.   prohibit the introduction of any evidence that has not been disclosed to that party at least five days before the hearing,

c.   obtain a written or electronic verbatim record of the hearing.

 

7.         Parents will have the right to have the child who is the subject of the hearing, present   and to have the hearing open to the public upon request.

 

8.         The hearing officer will:

 

a.   set forth the procedures and timelines to be followed during the hearing,

b.   receive or reject evidence from all parties and provide for cross examination of witnesses,

c.   issue written findings of fact and a final decision,

d.   after making findings of fact, ask that additional information be presented which was unavailable at the time of the hearing.  Such information will be shared with the parties involved in the hearing.  The hearing officer may take steps to bring about resolution acceptable to the parties including reconvening the hearing to consider specific alternatives that may be acceptable.

e.   cause the proceedings to be recorded by a reporter or by an electronic recording device.  If necessary for further appeal, the hearing officer will cause the proceeding to be transcribed, the cost thereof to be paid by the district.  If the district secures a copy of the transcription, it will be made available to either party at reasonable times for inspection and study.

 

 

9.         The decision will be made as follows:

 

a.   the hearing officer will render, in writing, all findings of fact and the decision concerning the appeal and mail it by certified mail to the parents, administrative unit, BOCES Board of Directors and the State Department of Education within forty-five days after the receipt for request for hearing.

b.   the record of the hearing officer will include all findings of fact, the decision, and a transcript or tape recording of the hearing.

c.   the grounds of the decision will be within the scope of the issues presented on record.

 

10.       Either party may appeal the decision of the impartial hearing officer to the State Department of Education.  Such appeal decision will be communicated to the other          party at the last address furnished by that party.  If there is no appeal, the decision of             the hearing officer is final.

 

11.       Unless otherwise agreed upon by the administrative unit and the parents, the child will             remain in his or her present placement until completion of the proceedings.  If the          hearing involves initial admission to the public school, the child will be placed in a public            program with the consent of the parents/guardian, until completion of the proceedings.

 

12.       Regardless of whether an impartial hearing has been requested or not, when there are             differences between the parties, the district will utilize a negotiation process which may             lead to reconciliation.

 

13.       Other methods of dispute resolution of which the parents may avail themselves include:             Mediation, Complaint Procedure, or Informal Negotiation.  The use of any of these         processes does not interfere with the right to obtain a timely decision in the due process      proceeding.

 

14.       Participation in mediation is voluntary, trained mediators are utilized and sessions are             confidential.

 

15.       Negotiation is available to reconcile differences and continues right up until the time of a             hearing.

 

G.      Confidentiality Of Information and Record Keeping

__________________________________________________________________________________________

 

Confidentiality of Information  6.01

 

Each administrative unit or eligible facility shall designate one or more employees to

serve as official special education records custodian who shall be responsible for the maintenance, care and keeping of records on children with disabilities and who shall insure the confidentiality of any personally identifiable information.

 

Parents rights to review records.  6.01(1)

 

Each administrative unit or eligible facility shall permit parent(s) to inspect and review

any education records relating to their children which are collected, maintained or used

by the agency in accordance with the above.

 

Record of access.  6.01(2)

 

Each administrative unit or eligible facility shall keep a record of parties, as allowed by

law, obtaining access to education records collected, maintained or used under this part

(except access by parent(s)), and authorized employees of the administrative unit,

including the name of the party, the date access was given, and the purpose for which

the party was authorized to use the records.

 

Parties allowed by law to access records are:  school officials, including teachers, who

have a legitimate educational interest;  officials of other schools in which the student

seeks to enroll;  authorized representatives of the Comptroller General of the U.S.

Secretary of Education, an administrative agency;  State Education Agency authorities; 

testing organizations (if anonymous);  accrediting organizations;  a student at the age of

eighteen; parents of a dependent student, even if the student is of majority;  those

protecting the health and safety of the student;  and others in emergency.

 

Opportunity for a hearing.  6.01(3)

 

Each administrative unit shall, on request, provide an opportunity for a hearing to

parents who believe that data collected or maintained by the agency is inaccurate or

misleading, or violates the privacy or other rights of the child.

 

Prior consent for disclosure.  6.01(4)

 

The special education records custodian shall obtain written parental consent before

permitting personally identifiable information to be disclosed, except for those person(s)

allowed by law.

 

Transfer of records.  6.01(5)

 

Special education records shall be transferred as part of the general school records from

one administrative unit, private school or approved facility to another upon written or

verbal request of the parent or school official when the child has transferred.  Written

consent of the parent is not required to transfer education records (including

assessment information and the IEP) from one education agency to another for the

purpose of provision of appropriate educational services.  When a child transfers from

one administrative unit or facility to another and special education records are

transferred:

 

All applicable timelines shall transfer.  6.01(5)(a)

 

All items of written consent shall transfer.  6.01(5)(b)

 

Destruction of information.  6.01(6)

 

Active and inactive records are retained for all special education students  

by the records administrative assistant.  Inactive student records are retained for the

current year and one year prior.  Records are archived alphabetically based on the

student’s exit    date. Records for students that have been out of the district for two or

more years are boxed and stored at Iron Mountain.  Rocky Mountain Imaging will start

imaging and archiving records during the summer of 2005.  Records will be

maintained and destroyed in accordance with Federal Regulation 3000.473 and Federal  CFR par 75.734. Student records will be imaged onto CDs and a copy will be sent to the

Colorado State Records Archives.

                                                      

The rights of the parents regarding educational records shall be transferred to the

student at the age of 18 unless the parents have been awarded legal guardianship by the

court.  6.01(7)

 

Record Keeping  7.01

 

To meet the requirements of Sections 22-20-104(3) and (4), C.R.S., an administrative unit

shall maintain a management and information system which provides for the collection,

documentation, aggregation, and reporting of student, staff, revenue and expenditure

data.

 

Reporting Deadlines:

a.    Information on CDE deadlines will be received from the CDE website and from

CDE staff.

b.    Reports and information submitted to CDE will be completed in a timely manner satisfying the CDE timeline.

c.    Adams County School District 14 will continue to maintain documentation for financial and student/staff data as backup to CDE reporting requirements.

 

Procedures governing record destruction of special education records:

a.    Special education student records will be retained and maintained for 5 years after a

student stops receiving services that are provided by federal or state grant funding.  ACSD 14J maintains special education records in their physical form on all students and only destroys records when they exceed the federal requirements of retention. (300.473)

                 Special Education salary and FTE’s are documented ad follows:

a.    Documentation occurs through human resources and payroll departments by the use

of specific general ledger account codes that clearly delineate salaries by teacher,  paraprofessional and administrative expenditures.  Time sampling performed by teachers, administrators, secretaries to log “hours” for one week per each quarter of the year to determine time usage vs. pay split accuracy.

 

Student data.  7.01(1)

 

Administrative units should maintain an individual student data base of the following

information:  7.01(1)(a)

 

  • Student name.  7.01(1)(a)(i)
  • Date of birth.  7.01(1)(a)(ii)

·         Primary disability.  7.01(1)(a)(iii)

·         Student's gender and ethnicity.  7.01(1)(a)(iv)

·         Primary educational setting.  7.01(1)(a)(v)

·         Date of the most recent meeting at which the child was determined to have a disability.

      7.01(1)(a)(vi)

·         Date of the most recent meeting at which the IEP was reviewed.  7.01(1)(a)(vii)

·         Individual staff who are providing special education programs and services identified in

      the student's IEP.  7.01(1)(a)(viii)

 

Administrative units, community centered boards, and eligible facilities should maintain

individual student records that contain the following:  7.01(1)(b)

 

  • Information about the disposition of each referral.  7.01(1)(b)(i)

·         Signed permission forms for initial assessment and initial placement.  7.01(1)(b)(ii)

·         Verification that parent(s) were advised of and understood their due process rights.

      7.01(1)(b)(iii)

·         Any written assessment reports.  7.01(1)(b)(iv)

·         Documentation that appropriate written notice was given to parent(s).  7.01(1)(b)(v)

·         Documentation that required participants were in attendance at meetings.  7.01(1)(b)(vi)

·         Records of all meetings at which the child was determined to have a disability.

      7.01(1)(b)(vii)

·         A copy of all IEPs.  7.01(1)(b)(viii)

·         Any additional information which documents that the child is eligible for special

      education services.  7.01(1)(b)(ix)

 

Individually identifiable information shall be held confidential and protected in accordance with state statutes and regulations, and in conformation with Section 7.01 of these Rules.  7.01(1)(c)

 

Destruction of records shall be in compliance with Section 6.01(6) of these Rules.  7.01(1)(d)

 

Staff data.  7.01(2)

 

Administrative units should maintain the following data for all special education services staff:

 

·         Name.  7.01(2)(a)

·         Special education position assignment.  7.01(2)(b)

·         FTE and salary attributable to special education, and source of funds supporting that salary.  7.01(2)(c)

·         Documentation of time spent with students with disabilities for each staff member who is employed part-time in special education and part-time in regular education.  7.01(2)(d)

 

Revenue and expenditure data.  7.01(3)

 

Administrative units shall maintain auditable records of all special education expenditures and of the state, federal, local and other revenues which are received in support of those expenditures.  7.01(3)(a)

 

Using the accrual basis of accounting, administrative units shall operate a budgeting and

accounting procedure which records the objects of expenditure for each special education instructional and support service area.  7.01(3)(b)

 

The plan includes policies and procedures which ensure compliance with Federal procedural safeguards relating to confidentiality of information.  300.560-574

 

The parents of a child with a disability are afforded an opportunity to inspect and review all educational records with respect to the identification, evaluation, and educational placement of the child and the provision of a free appropriate public education.  The agency complies with a request without unnecessary delay and before any meeting regarding an individualized education program or hearing relating to the identification, evaluation, or placement of the child, and in no case more than 45 days after the request has been made.  300.502, 300.562(a)

Parents have the right to a response from the participating agency to reasonable requests for explanations and interpretations of the records; the right to request that the agency provide copies of the records containing the information if failure to provide those copies would effectively prevent the parent from exercising the right to inspect and review the records; and the right to have a representative of the parent inspect and review the records.  300.562(b)

 

An agency may presume that the parent has authority to inspect and review records relating to his or her child unless the agency has been advised that the parent does not have the authority under applicable State law governing such matters as guardianship, separation, and divorce. 300.562(c)

 

The agency keeps a record of parties obtaining access to education records collected, maintained, or used under this part (except access by parents and authorized employees of the participating agency), including the name of the party, the date access was given, and the purpose for which the party is authorized to use the records.  300.563

 

If any education record includes information on more than one child, the parents of those children shall have the right to inspect and review only the information relating to their child or to be informed of that specific information.  300.564

 

The agency provides parents on request a list of the types and locations of education records collected, maintained, or used by the agency.  300.565

 

The agency may charge a fee for copies of records that are made for parents, if the fee does not effectively prevent the parents from exercising their right to inspect and review those records. 300.566(a)

 

The agency may not charge a fee to search for or to retrieve information.  300.566(b)

 

A parent who believes that information in the education records collected, maintained, or used under this part is inaccurate or misleading or violates the privacy or other rights of the child may request the participating agency that maintains the information to amend the information. 300.567(a)

 

The agency decides whether to amend the information in accordance with the request within a reasonable period of time of receipt of the request.  300.567(b)

 

If the agency decides to refuse to amend the information in accordance with the request, it shall inform the parent of the refusal, and advise the parent of the right to a hearing.  300.567(c)

 

The agency, on request, provides an opportunity for a hearing to challenge information in education records to ensure that it is not inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the privacy or other rights of the child.  300.568

 

If, as a result of the hearing, the agency decides that the information is inaccurate, misleading or otherwise in violation of the privacy or other rights of the child, it amends the information accordingly and so inform the parent in writing.  300.569(a)

 

If, as a result of the hearing, the agency decides that the information is not inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the privacy of other rights of the child, it shall inform the parent of the right to place in the records it maintains on the child a statement commenting on the information or setting forth any reasons for disagreeing with the decision of the agency. 300.569(b)

 

Any explanation placed in the records of the child under this section is maintained by the

agency as part of the records of the child as long as the record or contested portion is

maintained by the agency; and If the records of the child or the contested portion is disclosed

by the agency to any party, the explanation must also be disclosed to the party.  300.569(c)

 

Parental consent must be obtained before personally identifiable information is disclosed to anyone other than officials of participating agencies collecting or using the information; or used for any other purpose.  300.571(a)

 

The agency implements procedures when a parent refuses to provide consent.  300.571(c)

 

Each agency protects the confidentiality of personally identifiable information at collection, storage, disclosure, and destruction stages.  300.572(a)

 

One official at the agency shall assume responsibility for ensuring the confidentiality of any personally identifiable information.  300.572(b)

 

All persons collecting or using personally identifiable information must receive training or instruction regarding the State's policies and procedures.  300.572(c)

 

The agency shall maintain, for public inspection, a current listing of the names and positions of those employees within the agency who may have access to personally identifiable information. 300.572(d)

 

The agency informs parents when personally identifiable information collected, maintained, or used under this part is no longer needed to provide educational services to the child.  300.573(a)

 

The information must be destroyed at the request of the parents. However, a permanent record of a student's name, address, and phone number, his or her grades, attendance record, classes attended, grade level completed, and year completed may be maintained without time limitation. 300.573(b)

 

The agency affords children the rights of privacy similar to those afforded to parents.  300.574

__________________________________________________________________________________________

 

BOCES Policy/Focus

Rio Blanco BOCES ensures the protection of the confidentiality or personally identifiable information collected, used, or maintained for identification of and provision of services to students with disabilities.

 

Procedures

A complete copy of all records is kept in the BOCES office.

 

1.         Parents and guardians may inspect any and all data which is subject to collection          and may appeal the accuracy of the information.

 

2.         The Special Education Director’s Assistant will serve as the Special Education    Records Coordinator.  He/she has the responsibility for controlling access to special          education records information concerning special education and for insuring the         confidentiality of any personally identifiable information and will be trained to do such.            He/she will:

 

a.   respond to any request for inspection and review of an education record, including a request for a copy of an education record.

b.   respond to any request made for an explanation or interpretation of an educational record

c.   respond to any request to disclose or release personally identifiable information.

d.   respond to any request made to destroy an educational record.

e.   keep a record of parties obtaining access to education records (except access by parents and authorized employees of the board), including the name of the party, the date access took place, and the purpose of the authorized use.

f.    maintain, for public inspection, a current listing of the names and positions of the employees who have access to personally identifiable information.

g.   provide parents on request, a list of the types and locations of education records collected, maintained, or used by the school system.

h.   ensure that the confidentiality of personally identifiable information at collection, storage, disclosure, and destruction stages is protected

 

3.         Parents or guardian have authority to inspect and review information relating to his or her child unless the BOCES has been advised in writing that the parent or guardian does not have the authority under applicable state law governing such matters as guardianship, separation, or divorce.

 

a.   the BOCES will comply with a request to inspect and review any educational records relating to their child which are collected, maintained, or used by the district, without unnecessary delay and before any meeting regarding an individual educational program, or hearing related to the identification, reevaluation, or placement of the child.  This will occur in no case more than three working days after the request has been made, and at least ten days prior to any hearing relative to the child.  Access of parents or guardian to information regarding their child, as stipulated in the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (45 CFR, 99) is assured.

b.   when providing review of confidential records of a child with a disability to the parents, guardians, or their designee, in compliance with the law, the BOCES will provide appropriate staff members to assist in the interpretation and explanation of the information contained in the records unless waived by the parents, guardians or their designee for such assistance.

c.   the BOCES will provide, at no cost, one copy of the records upon request of the parents, guardians, or their designee.  The district may charge up to ten cents per page for second copies, provided that the fee does not effectively prevent the parents from exercising their rights to inspect and review their child's records.  The BOCES will not charge a fee to search for or to receive requested information.

d.   if any record includes information on more than one child, the BOCES will provide the parents of those children the opportunity to inspect and review only the information relating to their child or to be informed of that specific information.

e.   a parent who believes that information collected, maintained, or used is inaccurate or misleading or violates the privacy or the rights of the child, may request the agency to amend the information.  Upon receipt of such a request, the BOCES will decide within a reasonable period of time, whether to amend the information in accordance with the request.  If it decides to refuse to amend its information, it shall inform the parents of the refusal, and advise the parents of the right to a hearing.

 

4.         The BOCES, on request, will provide an opportunity for a hearing to parents who believe that data collected or maintained by the agency is inaccurate or misleading, or violates the privacy or other rights of the child.  It will, as a result of the hearing, reach a decision relative to amending the child's record on or before forty-five days after such an amendment is requested by the child's parents or guardian.

 

a.   if the outcome of the hearing is a decision to reject the amendment, the BOCES will inform the child's parents that they may place a written statement in the student’s file disagreeing with the information contained in the child's records.

b.   if the outcome of the hearing is to accept the amendment accordingly, the BOCES will inform the parent, guardian or eligible student in writing.

c.   any such statement will be maintained by the BOCES as part of the child's records as long as the contested portion remains in the records.

d.   if the records of the child, including the contested portion, are disclosed by the BOCES to any party, the explanation will also be  disclosed to the party.

 

5.         The hearing will be conducted according to the following procedures:

 

a.   the hearing will be held within forty-five days after the BOCES has received the request for a hearing, and the parent/guardian of the student or the eligible student will be given notice of the date, place and time reasonably in advance of the hearing.

b.   the hearing will be conducted by any party, including an official of the BOCES, who does not have a direct interest in the outcome of the hearing.

c.   the parent/guardian of the student or the student will be afforded a full and fair opportunity to present evidence relevant to the issues, and may be assisted or represented by individuals of his or her choice at his or her own expense, including an attorney.

d.   the BOES will make its decision in writing a reasonable period of time after the conclusion of the hearing.

e.   the decision of the BOCES will be based solely upon the evidence presented at the hearing and shall include a summary of the evidence and the reasons for the decision.

 

6.         Before allowing the disclosure of any personally identifiable information from a student's education records, the BOCES Assistant will obtain the written consent of the student's parent, guardian, or the eligible student.  The BOCES  will presume that the parent or eligible student giving consent is authorized to give consent, unless there is evidence of a legally binding instrument preventing the parent or student from giving consents.

 

7.         The BOCES may disclose personally identifiable information from a student's education             records without the written consent of a student's parents or eligible student when the   disclosure is to:

 

a.   other school officials, including teachers within the district who have been determined to have legitimate educational interests.

b.   officials of other schools or school systems in which the student seeks or intends to enroll, upon condition that the student's parents, guardian, or eligible student, be notified of the transfer, receive a copy of the record if desired, and have an opportunity for a hearing to challenge the content of the record.

c.   authorized representatives of the Comptroller General of the United States, the Secretary, and administrative unit head of an education agency, or State educational authorities, under the conditions set forth in this Section.

d.   State and local officials or authorities to which such information is specifically required to be reported or disclosed.

e.   organizations conducting studies for, or on behalf of educational agencies or institutions for the purpose of developing, validating, or administering predictive group testes, administering student aid programs, and improving instruction, if such studies are conducted in such a manner as will not permit the personal identification of students and their parents by a person other than representatives of such organizations, and such information will be destroyed when no longer needed for the purpose for which it was conducted.

f.    the BOCES will not release or provide access to any personally identifiable information in education records unless:

 

                 1.    there is written consent from the student's parent or guardian specifying records

to be released, the reason for such release, and to whom, with a copy of the records to be released to the student's parent, guardian, or designee and the student if desired by the parent or guardian, or

                 2.    such information is furnished in compliance with judicial order, or pursuant to any lawfully issued subpoena, upon condition that parents and the students are notified of all such orders or subpoenas in advance of the compliance therewith by the district.

 

8.         The BOCES will not destroy any education records when there is an outstanding           request to inspect and review them.  Prior to destruction of data, the BOCES will make         reasonable efforts to notify the parents that they have the right to be provided with a         copy of any data which has been obtained or used in determining special education      placement and services.  The information to be destroyed will not include those data       which are routinely collected and maintained on all school children, consisting of the student's name, address, phone number, grades, attendance records, classes attended,     grade level completed, and year completed.

 

9.         All records rights with regard to parents/guardians and children shall pass to the child   upon reaching age eighteen unless a court has appointed a           guardian for the child. All   other special education rights shall pass to the child upon reaching the age of twenty-   one, which is the age of majority in Colorado, unless a court        has appointed a guardian for the child.

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