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(6.53) Instead of having witnesses come to the due process hearing, can I submit letters, records, or other documents to prove my case?

(6.53) Instead of having witnesses come to the due process hearing, can I submit letters, records, or other documents to prove my case?

No. The right to cross-examine is an essential part of due process. Therefore, it is crucial to bring witnesses to the hearing who can testify about what they observed and/or what their opinions are concerning the issues in the hearing. ALJs may not base a decision on “hearsay” alone, but must have some other evidence to support the decision. [5 C.C.R. Sec. 3082(b).] Most documents are considered hearsay if a witness is not present to identify or testify about them.

Documents further support and establish the testimony of the witness. You should gather and submit any and all documents that are supportive of your position in the case. However, you should always make sure that some competent witness is available and willing to testify at the hearing on each major point you must establish in order to obtain what you believe your child needs for an appropriate education.