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SDI Question


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What is the purpose of this new SDI?:

_____ will realize meaningful educational benefit from placement in a classroom in which the age range of students exceeds the range prescribed by law because (a) the placement will ensure continuity of instructional grouping in a setting as close as possible to his home; and (b) the developmental and institutional levels and needs of the students in this setting are within an appropriate enough range of each other to enable appropriate group instruction to occur

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Chapter 14 (sp ed law in PA) limits how wide an age range can be in the same sp ed classroom.  I believe it's 3 years for elementary & 4 years for secondary level.  They are letting you know that your child might be in a room with older/younger students.  Some parents have an issue with this.  If your child is 6, do you want them in a classroom with 10 year olds?  This is a copy & paste from Chapter 14:

§ 14.146. Age range restrictions.

 (a)  The maximum age range in specialized settings shall be 3 years in elementary school (grades K—6) and 4 years in secondary school (grades 7—12).

 (b)  A student with a disability may not be placed in a class in which the chronological age from the youngest to the oldest student exceeds these limits unless an exception is determined to be appropriate by the IEP team of that student and is justified in the IEP.


The language you copied from the IEP is the school's justification that allows them to exceed the age range.  If you are not OK with this, they can put your child into another building that is not where the kids in your neighborhood go.

The purpose of the SDI is to let you know they are not following Chapter 14.  They do this so they do not have to hire another teacher & split up the class or get a bus to take your child to a different school.

I'd want to observe the placement before signing the NOREP & agreeing to this change.  Definitely ask what the age range is in the classroom they are proposing.

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