Deaf Preschooler with Cochlear Implants

The parents of a deaf 3-year-old sought reimbursement for placement of their daughter in a non-public school with an inclusion model, which included hearing peers in the classroom with the deaf students. The District argued that their self-contained classroom with only deaf students was less restrictive because it was on a public-school campus.

Additionally, Vanaman German LLP attorneys argued that the offer of services with a range of frequencies (e.g. 1-10 times per week) was not specific enough to allow parents to understand and agree or disagree with the services offered. The ALJ found for the Student on these issues and ordered reimbursement for the amounts spent and ongoing funding for the school year. Read the Decision.

The District appealed this case and the federal judge upheld the ALJ’s decision on all but one issue in favor of Student. The judge also upheld the ALJ’s relief granted. Additionally, the ALJ had stated briefly that her decision was not “stay put” under the IDEA. Student appealed that holding and the federal judge overturned her holding, finding that the placement and relief was stay put.



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