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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Parent who declines initial provision of services has right to hearing

SRO 08-094: Parent referred child to CSE for initial evaluation during his 1st grade year. Parent objected to the CSE’s recommendations, declined services and requested a hearing to challenge the adequacy of the district’s recommendations. District argued that by declining the initial provision of services, the district was relieved of the obligation to provide a FAPE and thus, the parent had no right to challenge the adequacy of the CSE recommendations. SRO Paul Kelly disagreed reasoning that
the district's failure to produce any evidence to demonstrate that it made "reasonable efforts" to obtain the informed consent of the parent, and the absence of a claim that the district failed to implement the student's IEP or the recommended services, I am not persuaded that the parent's lack of consent bars the instant challenge regarding
the appropriateness of the recommended SETSS services in the student's 2008-09 IEP.
Kelly also noted that the parent had not actually refused to consent to the provision of services, but rather that the parent had disagreed with the particulars of the CSE’s recommendations.

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