Skip to main content
Official State of Iowa Website Here is how you know
Decision Number
Joshua F.
Sally F.
Iowa Valley Community School District & Grant Wood AEA
Full Text

Appellant alleged 8 errors in law, specifically the legality and appropriateness of her son's suspension from school, manifestation determination procedure, placement in two interim alternative education settings and a change of educational placement to a disability segregated facility.Joshua is a 14-year-old freshman and resides with his mother. He is provided special education under an IEP in the District since January 2003. Previous he had been placed in a program for students with BD. Josh had been noted to have ADHD and anger management concerns. On September 26, 2003, the principal found marijuana in Josh's locker. Josh was suspended for a maximum of 10 days for "possessing and selling marijuana ... ."

On October 9, 2003, Josh's mother, her attorney and the IEP team met and conducted a manifestation determination to consider a functional behavioral assessment plan and review placement options. The general consensus was that Josh's action were related to his disability and that he needed a more intensified and structured approach on a short-term basis to meet his behavioral needs. It was determined that Josh would be placed in an alternative educating setting for 45 days, following the 10-day suspension. The Team agreed to temporarily place Josh on a home-bound placement where he would be instructed for 2 hours twice a week by his SCI teacher. The team met again on October 21st to finalize plans. Josh was placed at the Behavior Learning Center in Iowa City on November 3, 2003. His determined level of need was raised to Level III. Ms. F signed a consent form for immediate placement on October 27th.

The principal's testimony noted some surprise that the decisions made regarding Josh were now the subject of a due process hearing. Both Ms. F and her attorney participated in meetings and decisions and advocated for Josh's return to the District's high school, but raised no noticeably strong opposition to the Teams' actions. The ALJ found that no violation of either procedural or substantiove constitutional due process of law had occurred. The ALJ also found that the principal's handling of the suspension of Josh for ten school days for possession and sale of marijuana did not violate the concept of constitutional substantive due process of law.