Andover Public Schools v Martin – BSEA# 08-4981
BUREAU OF SPECIAL EDUCATION APPEALS
IN RE: ANDOVER PUBLIC SCHOOLS v MARTIN1
This decision is issued pursuant to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) (20 U.S.C. 1400 et seq), Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. 794), the state special education law (M.G.L. c. 71B), the Administrative Procedures Act (M.G.L. 30A) and the regulations promulgated under those statutes.
A hearing was conducted on April 3, 2007 at the Bureau of Special Education Appeals (BSEA) in Malden, MA. Those present for all or part of the hearing were:
Katherine Fink Administrator of Pupil Personnel, Andover Public Schools
Deborah Hall Educational Team Facilitator, Bancroft School, Andover MA
Richard Irving School Social Worker, Bancroft School, Andover MA
Scott Morrison Principal, Bancroft School, Andover MA
Stephen Jankauskas Out of District Placement Coordinator, Andover Public Schools Matthew Macavoy Attorney; Andover Public Schools
Joan Beron Hearing Officer, BSEA
The official record of the hearing consists of approximately five hours of recorded testimony and School Exhibits marked S1-S36C. Parent did not submit any exhibits. The record closed on April 3, 2008 after oral closing arguments.
I. Does Martin require an eight week extended evaluation in a substantially separate therapeutic program?
II. If not, what is the least restrictive environment (LRE) for Andover to implement Martin’s IEP?
III. Is Parent’s refusal to allow Martin to attend a therapeutic program a denial of a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE)?
FINDINGS OF FACT
1. Martin is a nine-year-old second grade student who began attending the Andover Public Schools in September 2007 (Mother, Hall). Prior to moving to Andover Martin and his family resided in Lawrence, MA. Id. Martin has, since March 2002, received special education services in reading, language and math in an inclusion setting, due to a language-based learning disability characterized by significant delays in auditory working memory and significant delays in his ability to concentrate and comprehend oral instructions and moderately delayed expressive language skills2 (S19, S22, Mother, Hall).
2. In 2 nd grade (School Year 2006-2007) Lawrence made a referral for Martin to receive school counseling due to safety concerns (S20, Hall). Martin’s teachers noted that Martin could be polite and helpful but that often while Martin was in the classroom he was very fidgety and anxious all the time, and refused to do work. The teachers also noted that when Martin did not get his way he acted out by hiding, screaming, kicking, running and yelling and had hurt staff members (S20). Martin also frequently ran out of the classroom (S20). Lawrence recommended that Martin receive school counseling for one half-hour session per week and a functional behavioral assessment (FBA) to develop a behavioral intervention plan (BIP), continue private counseling, begin a private social skills group and follow up with a neurological evaluation scheduled for March 30, 2007 (S20).
3. Lawrence convened Martin’s TEAM on December 21, 2006 to discuss significant social emotional and behavioral issues that were occurring (S21). The TEAM noted that Martin had difficulty expressing his needs during a conflict or would often become easily frustrated and angry. When this occurred Martin would often cry, have a tantrum, not follow directions or complete work, or would throw objects or leave the room without permission often hiding from staff (S21, S17, Hall). The TEAM concluded that Martin was making limited progress due to these issues (S21). The TEAM developed a preliminary behavioral intervention plan that included a reward chart, check-ins with the school counselor, 1:1 attention and allowance of legitimate movement in the classroom (S21). Mother did not sign the IEP (Mother, see S4).
4. Lawrence conducted a functional behavioral assessment (FBA) on March 13, 2007 (S17). At that time Martin was, despite special education services in reading, language arts and math and speech and occupational therapy, scoring at the warning level in reading and math and usually did not complete his work in the classroom (S17). The school psychologist observed Martin during his special education reading group of six children. Martin constantly moved in and out of his chair, stood up and walked around the classroom, and rated in the clinically significant range on clinical scales3 for Hyperactivity, Attention Problems, Depression and Aggression (S17). The school psychologist noted that the triggers to Martin’s behavior were often unknown, unclear and unpredictable because Martin often became angry, withdrawn or violent without any known precipitation (S17). The school psychologist also noted that Martin did not have insight into his behavior nor did he know how to ask for help (S17). The school psychologist recommended that Martin’s IEP continue with school counseling and include a behavioral intervention plan that included a system of positive reinforcers for appropriate behavior with a high degree of structure, support and strategies for anger management skills. He also recommended that Mother pursue her insurance for Martin to receive an evaluation for outside counseling, psychopharmacology treatment and for ADHD (S17). The TEAM did not reconvene to consider the FBA and Andover did not know that Lawrence had conducted an FBA because it did not receive the FBA with his record (Hall).
5. Martin moved to Andover with his Mother and brother on or about July 9, 2007 (Mother, Hall). He attended a camp through the Andover recreation department (Hall, Mother). Martin had a great deal of difficulty in that program (Hall). He would run away from the counselors, would run into the water on the docks, would have tantrums frequently, several times a day, sometimes hourly and would not follow directions (Hall). Ms. Hall received this information along with Martin’s last accepted IEP and his report cards on July 24, 2007 (Hall). Martin’s educational records did not have the IEP amendment developed on December 21, 2006 that Mother did not accept (S22). Nor did Andover have a copy of the FBA that Lawrence had developed (19).
6. Mother and Ms. Hall met on July 25, 2007 (Hall). Both agreed that Martin should repeat 2 nd grade (Mother, Hall). Andover also hired a 1:1 assistant for Martin who began on the first day of school (Hall).4 Martin’s transition to school, however, was still difficult (Hall, see S6, S10). Like in Lawrence, Martin upon arrival in Andover, had difficulty staying in class, following directions, staying focused in class and transitioning between activities. Martin also had several “meltdowns” where he would climb on tables or chairs, cry, yell, kick, sometimes inadvertently hurting others, or tipping chairs or other items, and hiding from staff. (Hall, Irving, see S6, S7, S10).5 At the end of the “meltdowns” Martin would often also engage in perseverative speech or actions consisting of chanting phrases (i.e., “no bus, no hot chocolate, no bus, no bus) (Irving). During these chanting phases Martin would have no eye contact and could not be engaged (Irving). These meltdowns would typically last thirty to forty-five minutes and sometimes more than an hour (Hall, Irving, see S10). Martin would also often run out of his classroom and the other rooms he was in, into other classrooms or rooms in the school and sometimes off of school grounds, or would attempt to roam the halls, thus necessitating several staff to coordinate Martin’s location through a walkie-talkie system, and then retrieve him (S6, S7, S10, Hall, Irving). This usually occurred three times a day but sometimes the school social worker would be called six times a day (Irving). Martin really wanted to have good days with no behavior problems and there were parts of Martin’s day that went well, however, despite the desire to do well there was no instance where Martin would have more than one good day in a row and there appeared to be no pattern or consistency6 to his behavior (Hall, Irving, see S10). Despite a one – to-one special education assistant, frequent use of small class setting, a reward system, frequent walks, consequences for problem behaviors and frequent contact with Martin’s mother to share information techniques. Martin continued to have difficulty in school (Irving). Therefore Andover proposed, and Mother agreed that Martin be reevaluated (S1, Hall).
7. Andover conducted these evaluations in September, October and November of 2007 (S5, S6, S7, S33). Despite several short frequent sessions Martin would become easily frustrated or unfocused and distractible and although he could be motivated to complete tasks with tangible reinforcers there was not any consistency to what motivated Martin ( see S5, S6, S7, S33, Hall). Testing showed low average to average cognitive ability with below average phonological awareness, decoding, reading fluency, spelling, written expression and writing that may be impacted by Martin’s distractibility and behavioral issues (S5, S6, S7, S33). Speech/language testing revealed significant weaknesses in word retrieval, understanding vocabulary and in language processing, with difficulty comprehending multistep and/or complex directions and significant expressive vocabulary delays in vocabulary and syntax (S33). The speech/language pathologist also noted that Martin had difficulty with social and pragmatic language and had questionable auditory discrimination and articulation that may be the result of a hearing impairment (S33, S3).
8. The TEAM reconvened on November 14, 2007 to review these assessments. The TEAM noted that Martin was an engaging child who loves to feel successful but that his distractibility and behavior frequently interfered with his learning7 (S3, S31, see also Hall, Irving). The TEAM proposed an IEP that added daily behavioral consultation from the school adjustment counselor, included the 1:1 assistant in the classroom that had begun in September 2007, and added daily academic support in math for five forty-five minute sessions, daily behavioral support during lunch and recess and both pull-out and in class counseling from the school social worker, along with increased pull-out services in language arts ( compare S3, S21, Irving). The IEP also added a number of accommodations in the classroom and goals and objectives in academic support, math and behavior. Id. The TEAM also recommended that an FBA be conducted in December 2007 and January 2008 and that the TEAM continue to engage in consultation with Martin’s medical providers and with Dr. Bostic and Dr. Colucci, both psychiatrists with expertise in working with children with emotional and behavioral issues ( see S29, S34, S35, Irving).8 The TEAM also recommended that Martin receive an eight week extended evaluation in a therapeutic setting to determine whether Martin had a specific neurological condition affecting his ability to learn or a mood disorder that was complicating his ability to self-regulate and determine what educational setting and what mix of services would best meet his needs (S3, Hall, Irving). The TEAM would reconvene during the extended evaluation and would again reconvene prior to the expiration of the extended evaluation to determine a placement that could be back in his 2 nd grade classroom with modifications if possible (Hall). Mother accepted the IEP but rejected the extended evaluation because she did not and currently does not want Martin removed from the public school class arguing that Martin does not fit in with the children in those programs and that Andover should do something else so that he can remain with his class (Mother, Irving, see S3, S4).
9. On December 18, 2007 Martin received a neurological evaluation at Children’s Hospital from Dr. Michael Robbins (S8, Irving). Dr. Robbins had previously seen Martin in March 2007 when he was attending school in Lawrence (S8, see S20). Dr. Robbins found that Martin had no localized neurological deficits but that his behavior in Lawrence and at Andover would suggest ADHD, but because Mother reported that Martin did not display this behavior at home he could not formally make this diagnosis (S8, Irving). Dr. Robbins also indicated that Martin might have a mood disorder or bipolar disorder. Dr. Robbins discussed having Martin seen for a chromosome study, having Martin become reinvolved with outside counseling, a referral to a psychiatrist for medication and an alternative school setting (S8, see also Hall). Mother was not at that time, and is not currently willing to consider medication or an outside setting for Martin because of the possible side effects.9 ( See S8, S10, Mother). Martin is not currently in outside counseling nor has he been further evaluated. Id.
10. The TEAM reconvened on January 17, 2008 to review a recent OT evaluation and to try to come to some consensus regarding a plan to address Martin’s emotional issues because Martin’s behavior had not improved (S12, see also Hall). Martin was continuing to be noncompliant and to run, hide, climb on furniture and/or tantrum, often several times per day, despite specialized instruction and accommodations, positive behavior intervention plans, calming techniques, the use of social stories, a sensory diet, direct services and consultation from the school social worker (Richard Irving) consultation from Dr. Colucci and Dr. Bostic and the 1:1 assistant (S12, S10, Hall, Irving).10 The TEAM was concerned that Martin spent most of his day in this state and due to his inability to focus and/or his refusal to stay in the classroom could not take in a full lesson and was either physically or emotionally unavailable for learning (S12, S10, S30, Hall, Irving). Andover continued to recommend that Martin receive an extended evaluation in a therapeutic setting so that the TEAM could determine how best to meet his needs (S12, Hall, Irving, Jankauskas). Mother did not consent to the extended evaluation (Mother, Hall, Irving, S12).11
11. Andover completed Martin’s functional behavioral assessment (FBA) on February 5, 2008 (S13). Martin was frustrated when asked to complete assessment tasks that required open ended verbal responses and his behavior and reactions to situations was unpredictable varying considerably from time to time even with similar presenting situations (S13, Hall). Mother’s completion of the BASC scales showed that Martin was fearful and often worried about what teachers, parents and other children think and about making mistakes and therefore was within the “at risk” range for anxiety. The teachers responses to the BASC Teacher rating scales showed that Martin’s behavior was at the “Clinically Significant” range for Hyperactivity, Conduct Problems and Depression and was at the “at risk” range for aggression, attention problems and atypicality, despite numerous interventions including a 1:1 assistant, math academic support, specialized small group instruction for language arts, direct instruction for speech and language, a positive behavioral reward system, frequent sensory interventions, frequent walks, and whole class sensory breaks every one to two hours daily reports home and frequent consultation from the OT, school social worker and special education teacher to the classroom teacher, 1:1 assistant and staff (S13, Hall, Irving). During an observation conducted on February 4, 2008 Martin was unfocused on tasks or noncompliant or oppositional, screaming, sobbing and resistant to redirection and anxious when he missed class time due to his tantrums (S13, see also Irving). This continued not to be unusual behavior for Martin (Irving, Hall, see also S10).12 The evaluator recommended an extended evaluation in a substantially separate and controlled setting in order to create an environment for Martin to learn where interventions and techniques for developing self regulation skills could be identified and implemented (S13, Hall, Irving). Mother continued to disagree with this recommendation (Hall, Irving, Mother).
12. On February 11, 2008 Martin was suspended for one day for hitting and kicking staff (S9, Hall). On that day Martin also left the classroom at least four times in the morning and three in the afternoon, hid from staff, dumped materials out of another student’s desk and had multiple tantrums (S10).
13. The TEAM reconvened on February 12, 2008 to review Martin’s FBA (S15). The TEAM discussed that Martin had left the classroom without permission a total of 292 times from September 2007 through the end of January 2008 (S13). Of the eighteen weeks tallied, Martin had left the classroom at least twenty times for six of those weeks with one week leaving 35 times in one week (S13). Of the remaining eleven weeks Martin left the classroom without permission between 11 and 19 times for eight of those weeks. The remaining three weeks were shorter weeks. Of those weeks Martin left the classroom between three and seven times (S13). Martin’s leaving of the classroom usually involved him running down multiple hallways, changing floors and hiding in various locations including locked bathroom stalls or under tables (Irving). The TEAM continued to recommend the extended evaluation and the ½ hour of OT services offered in the previous IEP (S15, Hall). Mother accepted the OT but has not accepted the extended evaluation (Hall, Irving, Mother).
14. Andover received the March 13, 2007 FBA that Lawrence had conducted from Lawrence on February 26, 2008 ( see S17, Hall). The TEAM reconvened on March 19, 2008 to discuss the Lawrence FBA (S18). Andover noted that the Lawrence FBA was consistent with the behavior noted by Andover ( see S18, Hall, Irving, compare S17, S13). The TEAM continued to recommend an extended evaluation in a substantially separate and more controlled setting because Martin’s behavior had not abated and had become more needy (Hall, Irving, see S18).13 Mother still did not agree that Martin required placement in a setting outside of his public school (Mother).
15. On March 28, 2008 Andover received a consultation note from Dr. Jeffrey Colucci who had reviewed Martin’s FBA, recent assessments and his IEP, consulted with staff and had observed Martin on October 1, 2007, October 15, 2007, October 22, 2007, and January 28, 2008 (S34). Dr. Colucci concluded that Martin was a highly deregulated youngster who required a very structured, behaviorally oriented, therapeutic classroom in order to access the curriculum and make effective progress. However Dr. Colucci noted that since there are still some questions as to what drives Martin’s behavior, how to modify it and how to precisely structure his learning environment , a diagnostic educational placement would be appropriate to determine what level of staffing Martin requires, what reinforcers and reinforcement schedule will result in behavioral change, how to effectively use limit setting techniques such as time out, what academic supports and services Martin requires and any other clinical diagnostic information to better understand Martin’s behavioral and emotional functioning as well as his ability to organize and how much impulsivity is a function of his ADHD and/or anxiety or a mood disorder (S34, see also Hall).
16. Andover asked Mother for consent to send out packets to therapeutic day programs to conduct the extended evaluation (Hall, Jankauskas). Mother did not provide consent (Hall, Mother, Jankauskas). Therefore Andover’s out of district placement coordinator sent out a redacted referral to the Lighthouse School in Chelmsford, MA, St. Ann’s Home in Methuen, MA and the SEEM Assessment and Intervention Center in Stoneham, MA (Hall, Jankauskas). The SEEM Assessment and Intervention Center is within the SEEM alternative school however this programs sole purpose is to conduct eight week extended evaluations (Jankauskas). The other two programs are therapeutic schools (Jankauskas). All of these programs are approved special education programs and can provide all the services on Martin’s IEP (Hall, Jankauskas). If Martin attended any of these programs he would be in a small group setting that contained experienced teachers and assistants in groups of three to seven children with similar needs (Jankauskas). Andover believes that Martin would make friends there (Irving). All three schools reviewed Martin’s redacted placement packet and found that Martin would be a good candidate for their programs because he presented with similar issues to the other students there (S36A, S36B, S36C, Jankauskas). However all of these placements require an interview with the student before they can make a decision about accepting him. Id. Ms. Hall and/or Mr. Jankauskas would be available to go with Mother to see the programs and/or go to the interviews (Hall, Jankauskas). Mother has not seen the programs nor has Martin been for an interview because she does not believe that he requires this type of setting and does not want Martin to imitate the bad behavior that he would see there (Mother, but see Irving).14
17. Andover staff truly like Martin and would have liked for him to be able to remain in his current school (Irving, Hall). Andover also hopes that Martin will be able to come back to their school at the end of the eight-week evaluation (Irving, Hall). However, despite numerous interventions Martin has not been able to make progress and if he remains in his current placement he is in danger of repeating second grade for a third time (Irving, Hall). Therefore Andover continues to recommend an extended evaluation in a behaviorally oriented therapeutic classroom in order to obtain differential clinical diagnostic information to better understand Martin’s behavioral, emotional and executive functioning, information on how to modify Martin’s behavior and how to structure his learning environment, information about the appropriate level of staffing support, reinforcers and reinforcement schedule that he requires as well as information regarding how Martin learns best and what academic supports and services he requires. In addition Andover believes that a therapeutic behaviorally oriented setting will help to address how much Martin’s impulsivity is a function of ADHD, anxiety and/or a mood disorder (Hall, Irving). However, Andover’s evaluation team facilitator also feels that since Martin’s behavior has not abated despite numerous interventions, an IEP that specifies an out-of-district therapeutic program may be appropriate (Hall). The SEEM Collaborative, St. Ann’s Home and the Lighthouse School could all provide these services and the school social worker would be available to help Martin successfully transition to the therapeutic program and, if recommended from the therapeutic program, back to his current school (Hall, Jankauskas, Irving).15
18. Mother feels that if Martin goes to one of these programs he will not be helped and he will pick up the behavioral problems of the other students there. Mother does not believe that Martin is engaging in these behaviors at school because he does not have these behaviors at home and Martin informs her that he is having a good day at school (Mother). Mother also doesn’t feel that he engaged in these behaviors in Lawrence (Mother). Mother feels that Martin is learning in school and feels that the request for an evaluation outside of his school is a way for Andover to remove Martin from the school (Mother). Mother feels that Andover should keep trying to work with Martin and if things are not working Andover should give Martin more time instead of trying different things (Mother). Mother also feels that if Martin attends any of these programs the students and others at his school will feel that Martin was sent away because he is a bad kid (Mother). Although Mother no longer wants Martin to go to Andover if they think they can’t handle him, she will not allow Martin to attend any outside behavioral programs and will move if she has to so that he can attend public school (Mother).
FINDINGS AND CONCLUSIONS
Andover has asserted that Martin requires a structured behaviorally oriented therapeutic day program for an extended evaluation period because despite specialized services and numerous interventions Martin still continues to be unavailable for learning due to his frequent running and meltdowns and his inability to focus even when he is in class. The evidence shows that Andover has given Martin a 1:1 assistant, math academic support, specialized small group instruction for language arts, direct instruction for speech and language, a positive behavioral reward system, frequent sensory interventions, frequent walks, and whole class sensory breaks every one to two hours; daily reports home; frequent consultation from the OT, school social worker and special education teacher to the classroom teacher, 1:1 assistant and staff; consultation from a clinical psychiatrist and a Ph.D. level educational psychologist; and daily to almost daily intervention from the school social worker, principal and educational team facilitator. Martin has also received functional behavioral assessments from Lawrence and from Andover, an outside neurological evaluation arranged by Mother, academic, speech/language evaluation and psychological evaluations from Andover and an assessment from Dr. Colucci (a Ph.D. level educational psychologist). None of these evaluations has helped Andover understand how to modify Martin’s behavior or how to structure his learning environment so that he can access the curriculum. The evidence is clear that the Andover staff who have interacted with this child truly like him and really wanted Martin to be able to succeed in their school. The evidence is also clear that if there were anything that could be done to keep Martin in his current setting they would do it. However, everything that could have been done has been done and despite immense effort Martin has not been able to receive a free appropriate public education in his current placement. As such, the least restrictive environment in order for Martin to learn is an extended evaluation in a therapeutic behaviorally oriented program such as the Lighthouse School, St. Ann’s Home or the SEEM Assessment and Intervention Center. The evidence shows that the extended evaluation that Andover has proposed is essentially appropriate and should be allowed to proceed.16
Mother also wants Martin to succeed. However, the evidence shows that Martin cannot learn in his current environment even with modifications and accommodations, and that Mother’s refusal to allow Martin to be interviewed at a therapeutic school does deny Martin a free appropriate public education in the least restrictive environment.
If a school district feels that a parent’s actions have denied a student a FAPE, it is required, as it did here, to request a hearing from the BSEA to resolve the dispute; 603 C.M.R. 28.07 (1) (b). A Hearing Officer shall, pursuant to Chapter 71B s. 3, order such educational placement and services as (s) he deems appropriate and consistent with the chapter to assure that the child receives a free and appropriate public education in the least restrictive environment; however if parents (or guardians or educational surrogate parents) reject the determination and the program desired is a regular education program, the local school committee shall provide the child with the educational program chosen by the parent except where such placement would seriously endanger the health or safety of the child, substantially disrupt the program for other students or if the child is currently in a special education program deny the child a free appropriate public education. In such circumstances, the local school committee shall proceed to the superior court with jurisdiction over the residence of the child to make a showing that the child should be placed in an appropriate educational program and the Court, if such a showing is found, shall be authorized to place the child in an appropriate educational program. A School District can also proceed to a family or juvenile court with appropriate jurisdiction if it feels that a parent has caused neglect because (s) he is unable or unwilling to make educational decisions for their child.
In this matter both Mother and Andover want Martin to be able to learn but disagree about how this can happen. Mother is encouraged to visit the programs that Andover has proposed and to allow Martin to be interviewed so that he can attend a setting where he can access the curriculum and get the services he requires.
Andover’s IEP and its extended evaluation provide Martin with a free appropriate public education in the least restrictive environment. Parent’s proposal for continuation in his current program does not constitute a free appropriate public education in the least restrictive environment for Martin.
By the Hearing Officer,
Joan D. Beron
Date: April 29, 2008
Martin is a pseudonym used for confidentiality and classification purposes in publicly available documents.
Testing conducted by Lawrence as part of Martin’s three-year reevaluation shows verbal comprehension scores at the 6 th percentile on the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children-4 th Edition (WISC-IV) and working memory scores at the 1 st percentile (S19). Achievement scores on the Wechsler Individual Achievement Test, -2 nd Edition (WIAT-2) were all below grade level with significant encoding difficulty in spelling. The evaluator noted that Martin’s behavior significantly deteriorated during the administration of the word reading subtest (S19).
The clinical scale used was the Behavioral Assessment System for Children-2 nd Edition (BASC-2) (S17).
The 1:1 assistant is a licensed elementary school teacher (S28, Hall). She has a wonderful relationship with Martin (Hall, Irving).
For example, on October 12, 2007 Martin inadvertently kicked the school social worker and was suspended for one day for refusing to follow directions, leaving the classroom, biting, kicking and screaming (S9, S10, Irving). He was previously suspended for similar behavior on September 19, 2007 and again suspended for ½ day on November 7, 2007 for similar behavior. During this incident Martin inadvertently hit his 1:1 assistant in the eye during a tantrum ( see S9, S10, Hall). On January 4, 2008 Martin’s 1:1 assistant was inadvertently scratched when he grabbed something from her lap (S10).
For example, sometimes the meltdowns or running occurred when academic demands were placed upon Martin, sometimes they occurred when no academic demands were required (i.e.. gym) (Hall, see S10).
Martin’s behavior also disrupted the learning of other children (Hall, Irving). Martin’s 2 nd grade classmates have had to be cleared from the room during Martin’s meltdowns between ten and twenty times during this school year (Hall).
Dr. Jeff Bostic is the Director of School Psychiatry at the Massachusetts General Hospital and an Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the Harvard Medical School (S29). Jeffrey Colucci is a PH.D. clinical psychologist with approximately thirty-three (33) years of experience who is currently the co-director and owner of Academy North Inc. where he serves children with behavioral, emotional, and other educational special needs through individual and family therapy, social skills groups, assessment and development of inclusion programs for schools and other school consultation (S35).
The daily notes seem to reflect that Martin had briefly been on medication on approximately November 29, 2007 and December 4, 2007 and that his behavior improved somewhat but that he was sleepy and sluggish (S10).
For example, on December 12, 2008 between 8:20 a.m. and 11:00 a.m., Martin left the classroom at least twelve times without permission, was noncompliant, refused to go into the classroom, attempted to take part of the computer printer apart, refused to participate in a library activity, left his special education classroom without permission and was noncompliant during class, moved his desk and attempted to push it through a hallway, took his assistant’s notebook and clipboard and brought it from the classroom to the office, left snack and ran into the classroom screaming, necessitating removal of the other children from the classroom, , began a tantrum that lasted about 25 minutes. In the afternoon, ran out of the room without permission, dumped vinegar during a group activity, grabbed materials, began another screaming tantrum at 2:18 which lasted until the bus came at 2:30 p.m. (S10, S13, Hall). This is not an unusual day (Hall, see S10, September 11, 2007, September 14, 2007, September 17, 2007, September 18, 2007, September 19, 2007, September 21, 2007, September 25, 2007, September 27, 2007, September 28, 2007, October 1, 2007, October 3, 2007, October 4, 2007, October 9, 2007, October 10, 2007, October 11, 2007, October 12, 2007, October 16, 2007, October 17, 2007, October 18, 2007, October 19, 2007, October 23, 2007, October 24, 2007, October 25, 2007, October 26, 2007, October 30, 2007, November 1, 2007, November 2, 2007, November 5, 2007, November 7, 2007, November 9, 2007, November 14, 2007, November 19, 2007, November 21, 2007, November 27, 2007, November 29, 2007, December 5, 2007, December 8, 2007, December 11, 2007, December 12, 2007, December 13, 2007, December 17, 2007, December 19, 2007, January 3, 2008, January 4, 2008, January 8, 2008, January 9, 2008, January 11, 2008, January 15, 2008, January 16, 2008, January 17, 2008, Hall).
The TEAM also recommended that Martin receive OT services for one thirty-minute period per week. Mother had not consented to this service at that time but has recently consented and Martin is receiving pullout OT ( see S10).
See S10, January 18, 2008, January 22, 2008, January 23, 2008, January 24, 2008, January 28, 2008, January 30, 2008, January 31, 2008, February 1, 2008, February 4, 2008, February 5, 2008, February 6, 2008, February 7, 2008, February 11, 2008.
See S10, S32, February 13, 2008, February 14, 2008, February 15, 2008, February 25, 2008, February 26, 2008, February 27, 2008, March 3, 2008, March 4, 2008, March 5, 2008, March 6, 2008, March 7, 2008, March 11, 2008, March 12, 2008, March 13, 2008.
Mr. Irving does not believe that Martin would imitate negative behaviors because he is a polite child, who has been given a good sense of values from Mother and really wants to get through a day without an incident (Irving).
Ms. Hall had previously worked as a curriculum supervisor at the St. Ann’s Home for five years (S24).
The questions that Andover has asked in its extended evaluation are appropriate and should be addressed by the therapeutic programs; ( see S3). However Andover’s speech/language pathologist (SLP) noted in a recent speech/language valuation that the status of Martin’s hearing is unknown and that his auditory discrimination was in question because he would repeat back words incorrectly. The SLP also found that Martin had articulation issues and issues with social language and that an audiological assessment should be explored to determine Martin’s hearing levels (S33). The evaluation also appears to suggest that auditory discrimination testing and social pragmatics assessment should be explored. ( See S33).
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