Friday, December 18, 2015

Administrative Law Judge Ignores MD Law and Fed. Regulations In Excluding Press from Hearing

See the previous post about a Maryland Administrative Law Judge that barred a reporter from attending a hearing involving a MCPS student needing special education services. 

Here is applicable state law-Md. Code Ann., Educ. § 8-413(f)(2)
(2)   Parents involved in the hearings must be given the right to:
(i)   Have the child who is the subject of the hearing present; and
(ii)   Open the hearing to the public

 Here is the link to the federal regulations

§ 300.512Hearing rights.(a) General. Any party to a hearing conducted pursuant to §§ 300.507 through 300.513 or §§ 300.530 through 300.534, or an appeal conducted pursuant to § 300.514, has the right to—(1) Be accompanied and advised by counsel and by individuals with special knowledge or training with respect to the problems of children with disabilities, except that whether parties have the right to be represented by non-attorneys at due process hearings is determined under State law;(2) Present evidence and confront, cross-examine, and compel the attendance of witnesses;(3) Prohibit the introduction of any evidence at the hearing that has not been disclosed to that party at least five business days before the hearing;(4) Obtain a written, or, at the option of the parents, electronic, verbatim record of the hearing; and(5) Obtain written, or, at the option of the parents, electronic findings of fact and decisions.(b) Additional disclosure of information. (1) At least five business days prior to a hearing conducted pursuant to § 300.511(a), each party must disclose to all other parties all evaluations completed by that date and recommendations based on the offering party's evaluations that the party intends to use at the hearing.(2) A hearing officer may bar any party that fails to comply with paragraph (b)(1) of this section from introducing the relevant evaluation or recommendation at the hearing without the consent of the other party.(c) Parental rights at hearings. Parents involved in hearings must be given the right to—(1) Have the child who is the subject of the hearing present;(2) Open the hearing to the public; and(3) Have the record of the hearing and the findings of fact and decisions described in paragraphs (a)(4) and (a)(5) of this section provided at no cost to parents.(Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1415(f)(2), 1415(h))[71 FR 46753, Aug. 14, 2006, as amended at 73 FR 73027, Dec. 1, 2008]

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