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DMR Eligibility Decision by H.O. Rosenberg 4 23 07

Date: 
04/23/2007
Author: 
Rosenberg

Outcome: Ineligible
Keyword: IQ, academic abilities

Hearing Officer: Deirdre Rosenberg
Counsel present for Appellant: Paul L. Durkee
Counsel present for DMR: John C. Geenty, Jr.
Appellant present: No
Hearing Officer decision on April 23, 2007
Appeal denied by Commissioner on May 16, 2007


Appellant is a 22 year old woman who currently attends the Judge Rotenberg Center in Canton, Mass. Appellant was diagnosed with having hydrocephalus at the age of 8 months. At 6 years old she was described by a doctor as having "extreme oppositional behavior" and self injurious behaviors.

Since she was 8 years old, she has lived in at least 12 different residential settings because of the extreme nature of her behavioral problems. She has also engaged in violent behavior towards others. On several occasions she has been admitted to psychiatric hospitals. Appellant has been diagnosed with several disorders, including ADHD-Combined Type, Dysthymia, Psychotic Disorder NOS, Bipolar Disorder with Psychotic Symptoms, Intermitten Explosive Disorder, and Nonverbal Learning Disability.

The summary of the evidence is in the following table:

Year

Test (for ex., WISC-III, WAIS-III, ABAS-II)

Age

Score

Diagnosis in report

Verb.

Perf.

Full

1997

WISC-III

12

93

73

82

The clinician noted the great discrepancy between Appellant's verbal and performance scores. She also opined that appellant was not psychotic but that "she appears psychologically organized on an immature, borderline level of personality." Clinician recommended that appellant be placed in a "highly structured residential placement with close supervision."

1999

K-BIT

14

83

77

78

-

2004

WAIS-III

19

79

76

76

Clinician noted that the scores were a reliable and valid measure of appellant's cognitive abilities.

2006

WAIS-III

21

74

67

68

Clinician notes that he believes appellant's scores were much lower than her abilities. 

 

The hearing officer admits that the evidence in the record shows appellant to be "one of the ‘neediest and most impaired students I have ever encountered.'" However, the hearing officer determines that appellant is ineligible for services based on her IQ scores and her academic abilities.

Appellant's IQ scores were above 70 to 75 when she was evaluated before the age of 18. Appellant has also passed the GED and read several books, such as Of Mice and Men and novels of similar difficulty.

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