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What is the Office of Administrative Hearings?

The Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH) is a neutral state agency in California that helps solve disagreements between individuals and government agencies. OAH does not provide legal advice. Instead, OAH provides neutral mediators to assist parties in resolving disputes, and OAH provides independent administrative law judges to conduct hearings. OAH includes both a General Jurisdiction Division and a Special Education Division.

Special Education Division 

Under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) children with disabilities have the right to a free appropriate public education (FAPE). When a disagreement arises between a parent and a school district regarding the provision of special education, OAH may provide a neutral forum to resolve the dispute. 

OAH special education services

The Special Education Division handles mediations, prehearing conferences and due process hearings that concern issues related to Special Education under the IDEA and related California law.

OAH hearings address a variety of
special education issues

OAH addresses a variety of special education issues: 

  • Special education eligibility;

  • A school district's right to assess;

  • Appropriateness and comprehensiveness of assessment;

  • Independent educational evaluations (IEEs);

  • Appropriateness of placement;

  • Placement in the least restrictive environment;

  • Discipline of students with disabilities;

  • Parents' rights;

  • The right of a student with disabilities to a free appropriate public education (FAPE);

  • And more.

Contact Education Attorney Molly Watson about representing you and your child before OAH.
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