Mediation and Due Process
Parents who have unresolved concerns regarding the appropriateness of the special education and related services provided to their child have the right to request mediation. Mediation is a voluntary process in which the parents and Steger School District 194 personnel meet to resolve disputes with the assistance of an Illinois State Board of Education trained mediator. In mediation, the parties are brought together to discuss and consider alternative solutions to the issues. Mediation is designed to resolve issues without going to a formal due process hearing. This service is provided by the Illinois State Board of Education at no cost to either the parents or District 194. If the parties do not reach resolution through mediation, a due process hearing may be necessary.
A due process hearing is an administrative hearing held to settle disagreements between the parents and District 194. The hearing is a formal procedure in which a hearing officer is sent from the Illinois State Board of Education. Both the parents and District may choose to be represented by legal counsel during the course of these proceedings. Requests for a hearing must be submitted in writing to the superintendent. A hearing can be requested at any time for any reason and cannot be denied by District 194.