In 2004, IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act) added a two-year statute of limitations to provide a parent of a child with a disability the opportunity to bring a due process claim against a school district. This two-year statute of limitations was included because Congress acknowledged that parents are at a legal disadvantage in the special education process and needed their rights, and the rights of their children, safeguarded.
Texas has adopted a one year “explicit time limitation” that supersedes the two-year statute of limitations provision in the IDEA. Even though IDEA encourages school districts to find speedy resolutions to due process complaints, school districts find various ways to extend the proceedings into months-long affairs—by requesting and then delaying evaluations of the student, by denying private evaluators access to the student, by withholding reports and documents requested by the parents, and by pleading unavailability of district staff. These actions increase the burdens and costs to parents and school districts alike. Texas’ one-year statute of limitations only serves to increase that legal disadvantage.
HB 1252 would align Texas law with federal law by expanding the statute of special education due process hearings from one year to two years. This would help parents and students with disabilities by expanding their ability to seek redress once they learn what their rights are and makes seeking redress an option available to them.
HB 1252 – Rep. Joe Moody
Read the full bill text here: https://capitol.texas.gov/BillLookup/Text.aspx?LegSess=87R&Bill=HB1252
Specific Action Needed:
Contact your own Texas House Representative (find below) and Speaker of the House, Dade Phelan. Tell them “Support HB 1252! Expand the time limit to request a due process hearing in special education to two years. Students with disabilities and their parents and caregivers deserve to have a fair opportunity to resolve special education disputes.”
Who to Call/Email:
Find your Texas House Representative here: https://wrm.capitol.texas.gov/home
Contact Speaker of the House, Dade Phelan here: (512) 463-0706 firstname.lastname@example.org
Please note! You will not be calling your federal representative. (Do not call your U.S. Representative / Congressperson).
Let us know if you were successful or if AST Advocacy staff need to do any follow-ups at 512-479-4199 Ext. 10 or email@example.com.