Manifestation Determination Review
The IDEA requires the LEA to conduct a Manifestation Determination Review within 10 school days of any decision to change the placement of a child with a disability because of a violation of a code of student conduct. No later than the date on which the decision to take a disciplinary action is made, the LEA must notify parents of that decision and of all Procedural Safeguards. The LEA, the parent, and relevant members of the IEP team (as determined by the parent and the LEA), conduct the Manifestation Determination Review meeting.
The team must review all relevant information in the student’s file, including the child’s IEP, any teacher observations and any relevant information provided by the parent(s), to determine:
I. If the conduct in question was caused by, or had a direct and substantial relationship to, the child’s disability;
II. If the conduct in question was the direct and substantial result of the local education agency’s failure to implement the IEP.
Factors to be considered by the IEP team include:
- The student’s disability classification
- The contents of the student’ s IEP concerning the student’ s behavior
- Information contained in the student’s recent evaluations that may be used to show that the student’s misconduct can be predicted such as
- Poor impulse control
- Inability to fully understand consequences of behavior
- Failure to know right from wrong
- Tendency to be disruptive or become easily angered
- The student’s history of misconduct
- Patterns of behavior versus an isolated incident
If the LEA, the parent, and relevant members of the IEP team determine that either (I) or (II) above is applicable, the conduct shall be determined to be a manifestation of the child’s disability. If the LEA, the parent, and relevant members of the IEP Team make the determination that the conduct was a manifestation of the child’s disability, the IEP team will:
- Conduct a functional analysis assessment and implement a behavioral intervention plan for the child, unless the LEA conducted a functional behavioral assessment prior to the manifestation determination
- If a behavioral intervention plan has been developed, the team must review the plan and modify it, as necessary to address the behavior; and
- Return the child to the placement from which the child was removed, unless the parent and the LEA agree to a change of placement as part of the modification of the behavioral intervention plan or if the conduct is subject to automatic removal (refer to special circumstances 45-day removal)
If the LEA, the parent, and relevant members of the IEP Team make the determination that the conduct was NOT a manifestation of the child’s disability, the appropriate LEA disciplinary action may proceed, assuring that the student continues to be provided with FAPE.