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(6.51) Where do I get the evidence I will need to present at the due process hearing?

(6.51) Where do I get the evidence I will need to present at the due process hearing?

The information you will need to support your case may come from your testimony if you can give examples of other similar learning experiences, good or bad, which you have had with your child when he received a certain level or type or service or when he was placed in a certain setting.

It is more likely that a teacher or specialist who knows your child or an independent “expert” knowledgeable in the education or training of persons with disabilities will need to testify in support of your position. The district will present witnesses (including current teachers and specialists) who are professional educators, psychologists, therapists, and administrators who have degrees and credentials in the fields which are related to the disputed issues.

Therefore, you will likely need to have knowledgeable educators and/or other professionals to establish the facts you need to prove, in order to obtain the services or placement you are seeking. Some students already have tutors, counselors, doctors, psychologists, or other professionals involved in their lives who can offer the kind of testimony you must present. Sometimes, you can obtain publicly financed evaluations from an independent educational professional. See Chapter 2, InformationonEvaluation/Assessments. You may have to spend your own money to hire an independent evaluator, such as an educational psychologist or learning disabilities specialist.

Before requesting due process, you must find potential witnesses and make sure they are willing and available to provide that kind of testimony. You will also need to consider: the time necessary to conduct an observation or evaluation and to prepare a report and testimony; the availability of the witness to attend a hearing; and the cost of their services.