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Handwritten Request For A Disability Evaluation In Student’s Assignment Planner Is Sufficient To Trigger Statutory Requirements

In the findings letter of OEC No. CP 0015-2019 (April 10, 2019), the Ohio Department of Education’s Office for Exceptional Children found that a handwritten note from a parent in an agenda book requesting a disability evaluation was sufficient to serve as a request for an evaluation under the IDEA and related disability laws such that the school board should have conducted an initial disability evaluation of a student.

The matter involved a parent of a public school student who expressed her desire for her son to be evaluated for a disability in a handwritten note in the student’s agenda book that was “used for tracking assignments [and] provided a place for communication between the [p]arent and teachers.” OEC No. CP 0015-2019 at 1.

In spite of this parental handwritten note, the school board did not initiate an initial IEP evaluation until after thirty (30) days from the parent’s handwritten request. The Office for Exceptional Children found that “the documentation shows the Parent did request an evaluation [in the agenda book],” and found that the school board was in violation of the IDEA and related disability laws. OEC No. CP 0015-2019 at 2.

To read this administrative decision, click here.

Authors: Matthew John Markling and the McGown & Markling Team.

Note: This blog entry does not constitute – nor does it contain – legal advice. Legal jurisprudence is like the always changing Midwestern weather. As a result, this single blog entry cannot substitute for consultation with a McGown & Markling attorney. If legal advice is needed with respect to a specific factual situation, please feel free to contact a McGown & Markling attorney.

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