Independent Educational Evaluation Procedures
Mount Union Area School District
Parents have the right to obtain an independent educational evaluation of their child. An independent evaluation is an evaluation by a qualified professional who is not an employee of Mount Union Area School District.
After reviewing the evaluation conducted by the Mount Union Area School District’s school psychologist, the parent may disagree with the district’s evaluation by filing a written statement to be attached to the student’s evaluation report or by completing the request for an evaluation at public expense form within 10 days following the review of the district’s evaluation. The request for an evaluation at public expense form is forwarded to the director of special education. The director of special education will discuss the request with the superintendent of schools. All requests for an independent evaluation shall be submitted to Mrs. Dianne Thomas, Director of Special Education/Pupil Services.
Mrs. Dianne Thomas, Director of Special Education/Pupil Services will be responsible for assuring the school district responds to the request within a reasonable time and that there will be no unreasonable delay either providing the independent educational evaluation at public expense or initiating a due process hearing to defend the public evaluation.
Within 5 days of receiving the request for an independent evaluation, the director of special education will send the parent a letter outlining the procedures for an independent evaluation, a list of independent evaluators, and cost limitation for independent evaluations.
If the Mount Union Area School District denies the parent’s request for an independent evaluation, the parent will be notified by the director of special education in writing that the evaluation was denied and the reasons for denying the request. The school district will immediately file a due process complaint to request a hearing to defend the public evaluation. If the hearing officer decides that the evaluation is appropriate, the Mount Union Area School District will not have to pay for the independent evaluation.
If parents obtain an independent educational evaluation at private expense, the results of the evaluation shall be considered by the school district in any decision made with respect to the provision of a free appropriate public education to the child, and may be presented as evidence at a due-process hearing regarding the child.
If a hearing officer requests an independent educational evaluation as part of a hearing, the cost of the evaluation must be paid by the Mount Union Area School District.
The Mount Union Area School District will provide, on request, information about where an independent educational evaluation may be obtained.
Whenever an independent evaluation is conducted at public expense, the criteria under which the evaluation is obtained, including the location of the valuation and the qualifications of the examiner, must be the same as the criteria which the Mount Union Area School District uses when it initiates an evaluation, the extent those criteria are consistent with the parent’s right to an independent educational evaluation.