OSPI encourages parents and school districts to work together to try and resolve disagreements that affect a student's special education program at the lowest possible level. When parents and districts are not able to resolve differences through direct communication, there are more formal dispute resolution options available.
Technical assistance resources on this page include research, articles, tools, templates, technical assistance centers, and websites. (Note: Use of the resources included on this site does not guarantee that the district's performance or determination status under section 616(d), will improve for the next reporting period.)
Dispute Resolution (General)
- Information About Dispute Resolution Mechanisms for Special Education Students website - Provides an overview of the three dispute resolution processes (special education mediation, citizen complaints, and due process hearings) available for students age 3 through 21 under Part B of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004 (IDEA).
- Notice of Special Education Procedural Safeguards for Students and Their Families - Requirements under Part B of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, the Federal Regulations, and the State Rules Governing Special Education. The procedural safeguards are available in English, Arabic, Chinese (Simplified), Khmer (Cambodian), Korean, Russian, Somali, Spanish, Tagalog, Ukranian, and Vietnamese.
- The Center for Appropriate Dispute Resolution in Special Education - CADRE creates products and delivers services that are high quality, relevant, and useful to the field of dispute resolution in special education and early intervention.
- OSPI Special Education Citizen Complaint Decisions website - Provides links to OSPI citizen complaint decisions by topic area as well as annual citizen complaint summaries for the past several years.
- Legal Assistance List for Special Education Disputes - Provides parents with information about free or low-cost legal and other relevant services available in the area.
- Washington's Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH) website - Provides information about the administrative hearing process for all persons with appeals pending before OAH, including access to self-help materials regarding the administrative hearings process.
- Procedures and Timelines for Due Process Hearings Under IDEA - The procedures and timelines in this document are intended to highlight the requirements for filing and responding to a request for a due process hearing request.
Resolution Agreements (Indicator 15)
- Information on Resolution Sessions - IDEA 2004 establishes a resolution period after the due process hearing request is provided to the other party. An explanation of the resolution period is provided in this document.
Mediation Agreements (Indicator 16)
- Sound Options Mediation Group website - Sound Options Group serves as the Administrative Agent to OSPI for Washington State to provide mediation services under Part B of the IDEA. IDEA mediation services are available at no charge to parents, school districts, lead agencies, or service providers.
- Mediation in Special Education (Sound Options Mediation Group brochure) - This two-page brochure provides families, districts, and other interested parties with a brief overview of the mediation process.
- CADRE Participation in Mediation website - The link is an external website hosted by the CADRE (The Center for Appropriate Dispute Resolution in Special Education) and provides a variety of resources, articles, videos, and frequently asked questions relating to the mediation process.