G L v. Ligonier Valley Sch. Dist, No. 14-1387 (3d Cir. 2015)Annotate this Case
After attending a parochial school, G.L. entered high school in the Ligonier Valley District in 2008. At an open house shortly after he started, G.L.’s teacher told his father that G.L. seemed distracted and lacked organizational skills. G.L.’s father orally requested that the District evaluate G.L. for special education needs. No evaluation was conducted and, following a car accident in which G.L. lost his sister, the District purportedly investigated whether G.L. lived within its boundaries. That investigation confirmed the District’s obligation under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) to provide G.L. a free appropriate public education (FAPE). Little was done to deal with G,L.’s struggles or alleged bullying, while the District repeatedly investigated residency. His parents withdrew G.L. from the school in March 2010. Within two years (the limitations period set forth in 20 U.S.C. 1415(f)(3)(C)), G.L.’s parents filed a due process complaint, alleging that the District denied him a FAPE and requesting compensatory education for September 2008 through March 2010. A hearing officer adopted a two-year remedy cap, compensating only injuries that occurred within two years of the filing date, regardless of whether filing occurred within two years of reasonably discovering older injuries. The Third Circuit disagreed and remanded, concluding that section 1415(b)(6)(B) is simply an inartful attempt to mirror the two-year statute of limitations.