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California Education Code Section 56043

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56043.  The primary timelines affecting special education programs
are as follows:
   (a) A proposed assessment plan shall be developed within 15
calendar days of referral for assessment, not counting calendar days
between the pupil's regular school sessions or terms or calendar days
of school vacation in excess of five schooldays, from the date of
receipt of the referral, unless the parent or guardian agrees in
writing to an extension, pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section
56321.
   (b) A parent or guardian shall have at least 15 calendar days from
the receipt of the proposed assessment plan to arrive at a decision,
pursuant to subdivision (c) of Section 56321.
   (c) Once a child has been referred for an initial assessment to
determine whether the child is an individual with exceptional needs
and to determine the educational needs of the child, these
determinations shall be made, and an individualized education program
team meeting shall occur within 60 days of receiving parental
consent for the assessment, pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section
56302.1, except as specified in subdivision (b) of that section, and
pursuant to Section 56344.
   (d) The individualized education program team shall review the
pupil's individualized education program periodically, but not less
frequently than annually, pursuant to subdivision (d) of Section
56341.1.
   (e) A parent or guardian shall be notified of the individualized
education program team meeting early enough to ensure an opportunity
to attend, pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 56341.5. In the
case of an individual with exceptional needs who is 16 years of age
or younger, if appropriate, the meeting notice shall indicate that a
purpose of the meeting will be the consideration of the postsecondary
goals and transition services for the individual with exceptional
needs, and the meeting notice described in this subdivision shall
indicate that the individual with exceptional needs is invited to
attend, pursuant to subdivision (e) of Section 56341.5.
   (f) (1) An individualized education program required as a result
of an assessment of a pupil shall be developed within a total time
not to exceed 60 calendar days, not counting days between the pupil's
regular school sessions, terms, or days of school vacation in excess
of five schooldays, from the date of receipt of the parent's or
guardian's written consent for assessment, unless the parent or
guardian agrees in writing to an extension, pursuant to Section
56344.
   (2) A meeting to develop an initial individualized education
program for the pupil shall be conducted within 30 days of a
determination that the child needs special education and related
services pursuant to Section 300.323(c)(1) of Title 34 of the Code of
Federal Regulations and in accordance with Section 56344.
   (g) (1) Beginning not later than the first individualized
education program to be in effect when the pupil is 16 years of age,
or younger if determined appropriate by the individualized education
program team, and updated annually thereafter, the individualized
education program shall include appropriate measurable postsecondary
goals and transition services needed to assist the pupil in reaching
those goals, pursuant to paragraph (8) of subdivision (a) of Section
56345.
   (2) The individualized education program for pupils in grades 7 to
12, inclusive, shall include any alternative means and modes
necessary for the pupil to complete the district's prescribed course
of study and to meet or exceed proficiency standards for graduation,
pursuant to paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) of Section 56345.
   (3) Beginning not later than one year before the pupil reaches the
age of 18 years, the individualized education program shall contain
a statement that the pupil has been informed of the pupil's rights
under this part, if any, that will transfer to the pupil upon
reaching the age of 18 years, pursuant to Section 56041.5,
subdivision (g) of Section 56345, and Section 300.520 of Title 34 of
the Code of Federal Regulations.
   (h) Beginning at the age of 16 years or younger, and annually
thereafter, a statement of needed transition services shall be
included in the pupil's individualized education program, pursuant to
Section 56345.1 and Section 1414(d)(1)(A)(i)(VIII) of Title 20 of
the United States Code.
   (i) A pupil's individualized education program shall be
implemented as soon as possible following the individualized
education program team meeting, pursuant to Section 300.323(c)(2) of
Title 34 of the Code of Federal Regulations and in accordance with
Section 56344.
   (j) An individualized education program team shall meet at least
annually to review a pupil's progress, the individualized education
program, including whether the annual goals for the pupil are being
achieved, the appropriateness of the placement, and to make any
necessary revisions, pursuant to subdivision (d) of Section 56343.
The local educational agency shall maintain procedures to ensure that
the individualized education program team reviews the pupil's
individualized education program periodically, but not less
frequently than annually, to determine whether the annual goals for
the pupil are being achieved, and revises the individualized
education program as appropriate to address, among other matters, the
provisions specified in subdivision (d) of Section 56341.1, pursuant
to subdivision (a) of Section 56380.
   (k) A reassessment of a pupil shall occur not more frequently than
once a year, unless the parent and the local educational agency
agree otherwise in writing, and shall occur at least once every three
years, unless the parent and the local educational agency agree, in
writing, that a reassessment is unnecessary, pursuant to Section
56381, and in accordance with Section 1414(a)(2) of Title 20 of the
United States Code.
   (l) A meeting of an individualized education program team
requested by a parent or guardian to review an individualized
education program pursuant to subdivision (c) of Section 56343 shall
be held within 30 calendar days, not counting days between the pupil'
s regular school sessions, terms, or days of school vacation in
excess of five schooldays, from the date of receipt of the parent's
or guardian's written request, pursuant to Section 56343.5.
   (m) If an individual with exceptional needs transfers from
district to district within the state, the following are applicable
pursuant to Section 56325:
   (1) If the child has an individualized education program and
transfers into a district from a district not operating programs
under the same local plan in which he or she was last enrolled in a
special education program within the same academic year, the local
educational agency shall provide the pupil with a free appropriate
public education, including services comparable to those described in
the previously approved individualized education program, in
consultation with the parents or guardians, for a period not to
exceed 30 days, by which time the local educational agency shall
adopt the previously approved individualized education program or
shall develop, adopt, and implement a new individualized education
program that is consistent with federal and state law, pursuant to
paragraph (1) of subdivision (a) of Section 56325.
   (2) If the child has an individualized education program and
transfers into a district from a district operating programs under
the same special education local plan area of the district in which
he or she was last enrolled in a special education program within the
same academic year, the new district shall continue, without delay,
to provide services comparable to those described in the existing
approved individualized education program, unless the parent and the
local educational agency agree to develop, adopt, and implement a new
individualized education program that is consistent with state and
federal law, pursuant to paragraph (2) of subdivision (a) of Section
56325.
   (3) If the child has an individualized education program and
transfers from an educational agency located outside the state to a
district within the state within the same academic year, the local
educational agency shall provide the pupil with a free appropriate
public education, including services comparable to those described in
the previously approved individualized education program, in
consultation with the parents or guardians, until the local
educational agency conducts an assessment as specified in paragraph
(3) of subdivision (a) of Section 56325.
   (4) In order to facilitate the transition for an individual with
exceptional needs described in paragraphs (1) to (3), inclusive, the
new school in which the pupil enrolls shall take reasonable steps to
promptly obtain the pupil's records, as specified, pursuant to
subdivision (b) of Section 56325.
   (n) The parent or guardian shall have the right and opportunity to
examine all school records of the child and to receive complete
copies within five business days after a request is made by the
parent or guardian, either orally or in writing, and before any
meeting regarding an individualized education program of his or her
child or any hearing or resolution session pursuant to Chapter 5
(commencing with Section 56500), in accordance with Section 56504 and
Chapter 6.5 (commencing with Section 49060) of Part 27.
   (o) Upon receipt of a request from a local educational agency
where an individual with exceptional needs has enrolled, a former
educational agency shall send the pupil's special education records,
or a copy thereof, to the new local educational agency within five
working days, pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 3024 of Title 5
of the California Code of Regulations.
   (p) The department shall do all of the following:
   (1) Have a time limit of 60 calendar days after a complaint is
filed with the state educational agency to investigate the complaint.
   (2) Give the complainant the opportunity to submit additional
information about the allegations in the complaint.
   (3) Review all relevant information and make an independent
determination as to whether there is a violation of a requirement of
this part or Part B of the federal Individuals with Disabilities
Education Act (20 U.S.C. Sec. 1400 et seq.).
   (4) Issue a written decision pursuant to Section 300.152(a)(5) of
Title 34 of the Code of Federal Regulations.
   (q) A prehearing mediation conference shall be scheduled within 15
calendar days of receipt by the Superintendent of the request for
mediation, and shall be completed within 30 calendar days after the
request for mediation, unless both parties to the prehearing
mediation conference agree to extend the time for completing the
mediation, pursuant to Section 56500.3.
   (r) Any request for a due process hearing arising from subdivision
(a) of Section 56501 shall be filed within two years from the date
the party initiating the request knew or had reason to know of facts
underlying the basis for the request, except that this timeline shall
not apply to a parent if the parent was prevented from requesting
the due process hearing, pursuant to subdivision (l) of Section
56505.
   (s) The Superintendent shall ensure that, within 45 calendar days
after receipt of a written due process hearing request, the hearing
is immediately commenced and completed, including any mediation
requested at any point during the hearing process, and a final
administrative decision is rendered, pursuant to subdivision (f) of
Section 56502.
   (t) If either party to a due process hearing intends to be
represented by an attorney in the due process hearing, notice of that
intent shall be given to the other party at least 10 calendar days
prior to the hearing, pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 56507.
   (u) Any party to a due process hearing shall have the right to be
informed by the other parties to the hearing, at least 10 calendar
days prior to the hearing, as to what those parties believe are the
issues to be decided at the hearing and their proposed resolution of
those issues, pursuant to paragraph (6) of subdivision (e) of Section
56505.
   (v) Any party to a due process hearing shall have the right to
receive from other parties to the hearing, at least five business
days prior to the hearing, a copy of all documents, including all
assessments completed and not completed by that date, and a list of
all witnesses and their general area of testimony that the parties
intend to present at the hearing, pursuant to paragraph (7) of
subdivision (e) of Section 56505.
   (w) An appeal of a due process hearing decision shall be made
within 90 calendar days of receipt of the hearing decision, pursuant
to subdivision (k) of Section 56505.
   (x) When an individualized education program calls for a
residential placement as a result of a review by an expanded
individualized education program team, the individualized education
program shall include a provision for a review, at least every six
months, by the full individualized education program team of all of
the following pursuant to paragraph (2) of subdivision (c) of Section
7572.5 of the Government Code:
   (1) The case progress.
   (2) The continuing need for out-of-home placement.
   (3) The extent of compliance with the individualized education
program.
   (4) Progress toward alleviating the need for out-of-home care.
   (y) A complaint filed with the department shall allege a violation
of the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (20
U.S.C. Sec. 1400 et seq.) or a provision of this part that occurred
not more than one year prior to the date that the complaint is
received by the department, pursuant to Section 56500.2 and Section
300.153(c) of Title 34 of the Code of Federal Regulations.

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Last modified: March 17, 2014