School Business Affairs
Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) procedures are the cornerstone of the provisions in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) that mandate the timely resolution of disagreements between parents and school officials.
ADR procedures are in the form of mediation and resolution sessions that are held before culminating in due process hearings. The sessions are designed to be speedier, less costly, and less adversarial than litigation. Subject to infrequent exceptions, disagreements can be subject to judicial review only after parents and education officials have exhausted the administrative remedies under the IDEA. The provisions establish time frames that parties must meet before they can initiate litigation.
In light of the potential complexity of the IDEA’s ADR process, those procedures can be costly and confusing for school districts. Accordingly, this column reviews the IDEA’s ADR options, starting with mediation, resolution sessions, and due process hearings. It then offers recommendations for education leaders to ensure compliance with the IDEA’s ADR procedures.
Copyright © 2014, ASBO International
Association of School Business Officials
Place of Publication
Russo, Charles J. and Osborne, Allan G. Jr., "IDEA and Alternative Dispute Resolution: A Primer" (2014). Educational Leadership Faculty Publications. 168.
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