IDEA Complaint Decision 01-086

On November 16, 2001, the Department of Public Instruction received a complaint under state and federal special education law from XXXXX against Milwaukee Public Schools (MPS). This is the department's decision regarding that complaint. The issue is whether the district, during the fall semester of the 2001-2002 school year, failed to provide a child with a disability a free appropriate public education (FAPE) when the child was sent home from school each day at 10:00 a.m.

On August 27, 2001, the child enrolled in an MPS four-year-old kindergarten program. On September 24, the child's foster mother referred the child for a special education evaluation. On October 22, 2001, an IEP team found the child to be a child with a disability and developed an IEP for the child. The child was suspended out of school for three days, September 5, 6, and October 23, 2001. On October 29, the child began attending a different district elementary school. On November 14 and 15, the principal drove the child home from school at 10:00 a.m. due to the child's behavior. On December 11, 2001, the district held an IEP team meeting to review and revise the child's IEP. The child's special education services were increased to six hours per day from four hours per day and the IEP states that a behavior intervention plan will be written to address the student's behavior problems at school. To date the student's out-of-school suspensions have not exceeded 10 cumulative days in the school year. A district need not provide services to a child with a disability for the first ten school days of disciplinary removal in a school year if services are not provided to non-disabled children during such removals.

This concludes our review of this complaint.

//signed 1/15/02
Carolyn Stanford Taylor
Assistant State Superintendent
Division for Learning Support: Equity and Advocacy

For questions about this information, contact Patricia Williams (608) 267-3720