If you have worked with IEP’s, you have probably seen this before: the Service Delivery Grid of the IEP might list “Sped Staff” as the provider of services. Massachusetts PQA (Program Quality Assurance) recently investigated a complaint alleging that the Hudson School District’s use of “Sped Staff” as the provider was insufficient, and a violation of Massachusetts special education law. PQA agreed with the complainant, and required the following of the school district “The District must send a memo to its IEP Team Chairpersons responsible for the development of the IEP stating that the use of term ‘SPED Staff’ on the IEP service delivery grid is not acceptable, and that each IEP should identify the type of service providers, e.g., special education teacher, paraprofessional, Occupational Therapist, etc.”
More specifically, PQA determined that the generic use of the term “Sped Staff” was a violation of Massachusetts regulation 603 CMR 28.06(2)(a), which requires IEP Teams to consider the type of service providers. According to the PQA report, “In the same manner which the IEP Team must distinguish between the types of related services necessary for the student (for example, “speech Therapy” or “Physical Therapy”) in making its placement decision, the regulation requires the same sort of consideration for distinguishing the student’s service providers.”
Thank you to Education Advocate Lucie Chansky and SpedWatch for bringing this PQA decision to my attention.
The Law Office of James M. Baron represents students and parents in special education and other school-related legal matters. Please visit http://www.lawbaron.com, or call 781-209-1166 for more information.
The Patriot Ledger newspaper published the following article today:
Special-education review in Milton set for mid-November
Representatives from the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education will be in local schools during the week of Nov. 15 to review the town’s compliance with special-education laws.
Included will be an examination of selected student records, classroom visits, and interviews with staff members, parents and others.
Federal and state special-education laws ensure that students with disabilities receive educations that prepare them for employment, independent living and possible post-high-school education.
Parents who feel their child is not receiving proper services are encouraged to meet with a state education staff member prior to Nov. 15.
To request an interview, call Paul Aguiar at 781- 338-3781.
SPEDWatch Inc., a statewide nonprofit working to secure the educational rights of all Massachusetts schoolchildren with disabilities, is also offering its services to parents in connection with the state’s review of the Milton school system.
For more information about the organization, go to http://www.spedwatch.org.