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DISCIPLINE - Regulations

10. Retain and revise the standard for a public agency’s basis of knowledge for children not determined eligible for special education and related services.

A child who has not been determined to be eligible for special education and related services under Part B of the IDEA and who has engaged in behavior that violated a code of student conduct, may assert any of the protections provided for in Part B if the public agency had knowledge that the child was a child with a disability before the behavior that precipitated the disciplinary action occurred.

A public agency must be deemed to have knowledge that a child is a child with a disability if before the behavior that precipitated the disciplinary action occurred:
  • The parent of the child expressed concern in writing to supervisory or administrative personnel of the appropriate educational agency, or a teacher of the child, that the child is in need of special education and related services;
  • The parent of the child requested an evaluation of the child pursuant to 34 CFR 300.300 through 300.311; or
  • The teacher of the child, or other personnel of the LEA, expressed specific concerns about a pattern of behavior demonstrated by the child directly to the director of special education of the agency or to other supervisory personnel of the agency.
[34 CFR 300.534(a) and (b)] [20 U.S.C. 1415(k)(5)(A) and (B)]

Dialogue Starter - Cross-stakeholder

Reaction Questions

  1. What is the current process or procedure in your school for a parent and/or a teacher to express a concern regarding a student’s academic or behavior needs?
    • Is the process working efficiently and effectively?
    • Please give examples from your experience.


  2. How are concerns expressed by parent(s) and/or teachers documented and tracked by your district? Is the process working efficiently and effectively?- Please give examples from your experience.


  3. In your opinion, do concerns expressed within a response to intervention process equal an expression of specific concerns that indicate a basis of knowledge relative to special education protections?


  4. In your opinion, do concerns expressed within an instructional assistance team process equal an expression of specific concerns that indicate a basis of knowledge relative to special education protections?


Application Questions

  1. What new knowledge and skills might be necessary across all stakeholders, including students with disabilities and their families, to properly implement and monitor this provision?


  2. What communication processes would be helpful to facilitate implementation of this provision among school personnel and families?


  3. What processes need to be put into place to train school personnel about this provision and the point at which an expression becomes “basis of knowledge” that a student has a disability?


  4. How will the school ensure that personnel who have expertise to identify behavioral and mental health issues (in-school or outside agencies) are part of the decision-making? How will interagency agreements support the work of these teams?


  5. What procedures can be put into place to move into action after a need has been appropriately expressed?


  6. What features and definitions need to be put in place to train hearing officers regarding this provision, especially in light of the implementation of early intervening services processes?


    These questions were developed by the following stakeholders working together:

    Role: Service Provider
    Location: Alaska

    Role: Service Provider
    Location: California

    Role: Educational Consultant
    Location: Florida

    Role: Higher Education
    Location: Indiana

    Role: Family
    Location: New Jersey

    Role: Teacher
    Location: Pennsylvania

    Role: Administrator
    Location: Pennsylvania

    Role: Teacher
    Location: South Carolina

    Role: Teacher
    Location: West Virginia