1. In the event of
funds being withheld in accordance with the regulations in the State Plan under
Part B of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and state
regulations regarding students with disabilities, the State Department of
Education will give notice to the appropriate school official (district
superintendent, agency head, or director of private school) by certified mail
which shall include notification of the right to request a hearing.
2. Within five (5) calendar days after
receipt of the notice, the applicant may apply in writing to the Mississippi
Department of Education for a hearing before a hearing officer with knowledge
of special education federal and state regulations. The hearing officer will be
designated by the Mississippi State Board of Education pursuant to Mississippi
Code Ann. Section
3. The hearing officer shall
notify the appropriate school official of the time, place, and date of the
hearing. The date shall be not less than five (5) calendar days from the
receipt of the request for a hearing.
4. It shall be the responsibility of each
party to secure the attendance of its witnesses, if any, and any expenses
attendant thereto shall be borne by the party calling that witness. Two copies
of any written evidence will be submitted: one copy for the hearing officer and
one for the opposing party. Evidence submitted by the school official will be
labeled P-1, P-2, etc. Evidence submitted by the department will be labeled
D-1, D-2, etc. Evidence may be stipulated and entered as S-1, S-2, etc.
5. The hearing officer shall
require that all witnesses be sworn before offering testimony. The hearing
officer shall not be bound by the Common Law or statutory rules of evidence or
by formal or technical rules of procedure and may conduct reasonable
questioning of any witnesses. The hearing officer may limit the examination or
cross-examination of any witnesses to keep the hearing focused on the issue of
withholding of funds and may recess/reconvene the hearing if necessary.
6. The Department of Education
shall make a record of the proceedings to include all documents introduced into
evidence which shall be available for cost upon the written request of the
7. Within fifteen (15)
working days of the conclusion of the hearing, the hearing officer shall make a
recommendation in the following format: (1) purpose of the hearing, (2) summary
of evidence presented, and (3) conclusions and recommendations, a copy of which
shall be sent to the parties by certified mail.
8. The completed record along with the
hearing officer's recommendation shall be certified to the State Board of
Education which shall at its next regularly scheduled meeting consider only the
record and shall not consider any evidence or material not included within the
record in reaching its final determination.
9. If the State Board of Education shall
affirm the Department's actions of withholding of Part B and 89-313 funds, the
State Board of Education shall make its written findings and issue its order
and notice shall be given the school official by certified mail. The decision
of the State Board of Education is final.