OEC Clarifies Changes to Prior Written Notice

    January 2014

    On January 2, 2014 Squire Sanders circulated an alert on immediate changes required by the Office for Exceptional Children (OEC) regarding the issuance of a prior written notice even when the parties agree upon an IEP. On January 22, 2014, OEC followed up with clarifying information.

    Effective immediately, the January 21, 2014 Memorandum must be inserted into every copy of the “Whose Idea Is This?”. Be sure to distribute this memorandum to all administrators, psychologists and other district personnel who are responsible for providing procedural safeguards to parents in accordance with existing applicable rules.

    OEC has also revised its chart clarifying when you must provide “Whose Idea Is This?” and when you must provide a PR-01. A helpful Q&A was also provided. Again, be sure those staff who are responsible for providing procedural safeguards and/or prior written notice have a copy of the chart for guidance.

    The following are highlights of just some of the impact of these changes:

    • The PR-01 must be provided after any IEP meeting but before implementing the IEP. This will require advance planning as the effective date of the IEP and date of initiation of services must anticipate the day the PR-01 is issued. While you may be tempted to have the PR-01 prepared to hand out at the IEP meeting, this could be perceived as “predetermination”. It is best to have a draft ready to edit, but allow some time for the PR-01 to be issued as you insert dates into the IEP.
    • Until the PR-01 form is revised, where the parties have agreed to the IEP, you will need to check the “Other” box under “Type of Action Taken” and begin your response to Question 2 on the form with: “At the IEP meeting on (date) the following proposed (or refused) action was agreed upon by all members of the IEP team.”
    • Do not create a “one size fits all” PR-01 to send after any IEP meeting. Each PR-01 must be individualized per meeting highlighting the key items discussed.
    • If the eligibility meeting (ETR) and IEP meeting are held back to back, two separate PR-01 notices must be provided: one regarding the outcome of the ETR meeting and the other regarding the outcome of the IEP meeting.