Resolution and Compliance Unit
The Resolution and Compliance Unit (RACU) monitors and supports the provision of procedural safeguards under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA 2004). RACU seeks to engage parties with cooperative problem solving of disputes regarding the identification, evaluation, educational placement, or provision of a free appropriate public education (FAPE) for a student with a disability or suspected of having a disability under IDEA.
What we do
The major functions and activities of RACU are carried out through the following services:
- Managing all the processes available to parents/guardians to appeal special education decisions related to their student, including administrative reviews, mediations, resolution meetings, and due process hearings. In addition, the unit manages the Montgomery County Public Schools response to all Office of Civil Rights and Maryland State Department of Education complaints.
- Overseeing the facilitated Individualized Education Program (IEP) process which provides trained facilitators from the Conflict Resolution Center of Montgomery County to assist IEP team members in communicating effectively and reaching consensus in developing a student's IEP. This process is effective in situations where there is extensive information to process or where there is disagreement and the team wants to make progress without formal dispute resolution.
- Safeguarding the rights of students with disabilities by providing professional development and technical support to schools regarding compliance with applicable laws and regulations related to providing educational services to students with disabilities. RACU also provides professional development regarding special education compliance issues for school administrators, central and school-based special educators, and student services staff members.
- Participating on work groups designed to improve instructional practices that will decrease the over-representation of minority students identified as requiring special education services, as well as the over-representation of special education students receiving disciplinary sanctions involving removal from their educational program.
- Working with families to provide technical support in understanding and accessing their procedural safeguards under the IDEA 2004 and assisting parents/guardians in resolving disputes prior to mediation or due process hearings.