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Archive for October, 2011

Student’s lack of understanding of behavioral point system and school district’s use of physical restraint requires school district to pay for student’s private behavioral services

Tuesday, October 11th, 2011

B.H. v. West Clermont Board of Education, 56 IDELR 226 (S.D. Ohio 2011): The court required the school district to pay for the private behavioral services of a student with a variety of diagnoses, including mental retardation, epilepsy, asthma, selective mutism, ADHD, explosive behavior disorder, Cushing’s Disease, pervasive developmental disorder (a form of autism), and post traumatic stress disorder. The school district’s use of a behavioral point system, whereby the student was awarded points and could obtain rewards for positive behavior was not appropriate since the student could not understand the system. Moreover, the school district’s use of physical restraint as a behavioral intervention was inappropriate, since evidence demonstrated that the student’s private program was able to manage the student’s behavior without the use of physical restraint. In addition, the court found evidence to support the parent’s contention that the school district predetermined the student’s educational program where the IEP team ignored documentation presented by the parents of the student’s need for speech services. Although the state-level review officer determined that the student was not denied a free appropriate public education (FAPE) because the student did not regress academically, the court concluded that the state-level review officer committed error by not considering the student’s functional advances as well as her academic advances.

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