The Massachusetts Bureau of Special Education Appeals has released its statistics for 2010.
The statistics reveal that most disputes with school districts result in a resolution long before a hearing decision is issued, and if the dispute reaches the hearing stage the school district is likely to prevail.
854 cases voluntarily participated in mediation and 84.5% ended in a legally binding agreement. 545 parities requested hearings, but the vast majority of disputes were resolved before a decision was issued.
Only 50 hearing decisions were issued and the school district prevailed outright in 58% of the time, the parents only prevailed 18%, and 8% of the time mixed relief was granted.
School districts were represented by counsel 100% of the time.
Of the 29 cases where the school districts fully prevailed, parents were represented by counsel in 8 cases (27% of the time).
Of the 9 cases where parents fully prevailed, parents were represented by counsel in 5 cases (56% of the time).
In cases where mixed relief was granted, parents were represented by counsel in 5 cases (63% of the time). These statistics highlight the importance working with a special education lawyer when pursuing a due process claim.Read the entire report here.If you are considering filing a due process request with the Massachusetts Board of Special Education Appeals, contact the North Shore law office of Lillian E. Wong today.