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Flour Bluff v. Student, Dkt. No. 265-SE-0515 (Hearing Officer Sharon Cloninger, November 4, 2015).

Facts:  The District filed this request for a due process hearing, seeking a ruling that its FIE was appropriate and that the parent was not entitled to an independent educational evaluation (IEE) at District expense.  The record showed that the District conducted an FIE and that the student’s ARD Committee considered the FIE.  The student is eligible for special education services due to autism and a speech impairment.  The parent disagreed with the ARD Committee decisions and requested an IEE.  The District refused and requested a due process hearing.

Holding:   The hearing officer determined that the District’s FIE was appropriate and that the parent was not entitled to an IEE.  The members of the multi-disciplinary team that conducted the FIE were well training and qualified.  The student was evaluated using a variety of assessment tools and strategies to gather relevant functional, developmental, and academic information, including information provided by the parent and teachers.  The FIE provided the necessary information to develop the student’s educational program.  The student was assessed in all areas of suspected disability and the FIE was sufficiently comprehensive to identify all of the student’s educational and related-services needs.  The FIE was appropriate and met all IDEA requirements.  Thus, the parent was not entitled to an IEE.

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