Report 2015-112 Recommendation 3 Responses

Report 2015-112: Student Mental Health Services: Some Students' Services Were Affected by a New State Law, and the State Needs to Analyze Student Outcomes and Track Service Costs (Release Date: January 2016)

Recommendation #3 To: Education, Department of

To ensure that all LEAs comply with federal special education requirements, Education should require them to include directly in a student's IEP document reasons for any changes to student placement or services.

Annual Follow-Up Agency Response From November 2017

As stated in prior updates, Education continues to not concur with this recommendation, as it would impose a state requirement not contained in federal law. However, through the passage of SB 884, the California Legislature took action to address concerns about public access to information on pupil and parent rights. Specifically, the bill added Section 56415 to the California Education Code, which required Education to include a link to contact information to the state's Family Empowerment Centers on the existing Procedural Safeguards Web page. Education has complied with this requirement by adding the link (http://www.cde.ca.gov/sp/se/qa/pseng.asp).

Education considers this recommendation closed and no further updates will be provided.

California State Auditor's Assessment of Annual Follow-Up Status: Will Not Implement


1-Year Agency Response

Through the passage of SB 884, the California Legislature took action to address concerns about public access to information on pupil and parent rights. Specifically, the bill added Section 56415 to the California Education Code, which required Education to include a link to contact information to the state's Family Empowerment Centers on the existing Procedural Safeguards Web page. Education has added that link. The Procedural Safeguards Web page (English version) is here: http://www.cde.ca.gov/sp/se/qa/pseng.asp.

  • Completion Date: January 2017
  • Response Date: January 2017

California State Auditor's Assessment of 1-Year Status: No Action Taken

Education asserts that it has complied with a new requirement in state law related to procedural safeguards. However, it does not mention in its response any activity related to our recommendation to require LEAs to document the reasons for service or placement changes in a student's IEP document.


6-Month Agency Response

Education continues to not concur with this recommendation as it would impose a state requirement not contained in federal law. However, changes in current state law could impose additional obligations on LEAs that may create new documentation requirements.

  • Response Date: July 2016

California State Auditor's Assessment of 6-Month Status: Will Not Implement

As we specified in our comment on Education's 60-day response, we directed this recommendation to Education, not the Legislature. Our recommendation, if implemented, would result in additional direction from Education to LEAs about how they should meet an existing federal requirement. We continue to believe that by setting clear direction about how LEAs should meet existing federal requirements, Education would strengthen its ability to oversee special education in California.


60-Day Agency Response

Education continues to not concur with this recommendation as it would impose a state requirement not contained in federal law. However, changes in current state law could impose additional obligations on LEAs that may create new documentation requirements. For example, Senator Beall's office has sought Education's input and assistance in drafting legislation, Senate Bill 884* (SB 884), that would require: 1) a copy of each "prior written notice," documenting the reasons for changes to placement or services to be maintained in the pupil's records; 2) a copy of pupil and parent rights, under the IDEA, to be included in annual notification information provided to all parents; and 3) parents be provided contact information for all family empowerment centers and parent training and information centers that are in the special education local plan area of which the student's LEA is a member.

*The specific legislative language noted in this response can be found in SB 884, which is pending approval and subject to revision.

  • Response Date: April 2016

California State Auditor's Assessment of 60-Day Status: Will Not Implement

We directed this recommendation to Education, not the Legislature. Our recommendation, if implemented, would result in additional direction from Education to LEAs about how they should meet an existing federal requirement. By setting clear direction about how LEAs should meet existing federal requirements, we believe Education would strengthen its ability to oversee special education in California.


All Recommendations in 2015-112

Agency responses received are posted verbatim.


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