Manifestation Determination Review

Understanding Manifestation Determination Review
A Manifestation Determination must be held within 10 school days of any decision to change the student’s placement because of misconduct. This decision is made by a Manifestation Determination Review team (MDR). The purpose of the meeting is to determine if the conduct was caused by or had a direct and substantial relationship to the child’s disability, or if the student’s conduct was the direct result of  RCPS failure to implement the student’s IEP. If either is in the affirmative, RCPS must proceed in meeting the requirements of the law regarding a functional behavioral assessment and a behavioral intervention plan.
 

RCPS must consider the following three factors in conducting a manifestation determination:

  • Is the conduct in question caused by the child’s disability?
  • Does the conduct have a direct and substantial relationship to the child’s disability?
  • Is the conduct in question the direct result of the school division’s failure to implement the IEP?

A comprehensive problem-solving review to identify why the misconduct occurred should guide IEP teams to successful manifestation determinations. Factors that should be considered include environmental factors, the child's school program, home factors and the child's mental, physical and developmental challenges. Other important factors IEP teams may consider include the following:

  • The child's discipline history (total number of suspensions, the proximity of suspensions and the length of each suspension).
  • The type of misconduct in relation to the child's discipline history (isolated instance vs. repeated; whether the child's behavior is substantially similar to behavior in previous and current incident).
  • The factors contributing to the misconduct such as unique circumstances, information from observers of the incident, environmental factors, educational program, home factors and the child's mental, physical and developmental challenges.
  • Was the student code of conduct provided to the family?
  • Whether the behavior was dangerous, likely to result in injury or inflicted "serious bodily injury" on another person.
  • The effectiveness of current behavioral strategies to prevent similar misbehavior and reinforce desirable behavior in the child's school (school-wide discipline).
  • The effectiveness of the child's Behavioral Intervention Plan (BIP) in relationship to the misconduct and whether the BIP is based on research-based practices.
  • In the absence of a BIP, the administration of a Functional Behavioral Assessment (FBA).
  • Whether more information is needed (FBA or other types of evaluation).
 

How To Determine Manifestation

Practice Tips

Standard One If the conduct in question was caused by, or had a direct and substantial relationship to, the child's disability.

 

A comprehensive problem-solving review to identify why the misconduct occurred should guide IEP teams to successful manifestation determinations. Factors that should be considered include environmental factors, the child's school program, home factors and the child's mental, physical and developmental challenges. Other important factors IEP teams may consider include the following:

  • The child's discipline history (total number of suspensions, the proximity of suspensions and the length of each suspension).
  • The type of misconduct in relation to the child's discipline history (isolated instance vs. repeated; whether the child's behavior is substantially similar to behavior in previous and current incident).
  • The factors contributing to the misconduct such as unique circumstances, information from observers of the incident, environmental factors, educational program, home factors and the child's mental, physical and developmental challenges.
  • Was the student code of conduct provided to the family?
  • Whether the behavior was dangerous, likely to result in injury or inflicted "serious bodily injury" on another person.
  • The effectiveness of current behavioral strategies to prevent similar misbehavior and reinforce desirable behavior in the child's school (school-wide discipline).
  • The effectiveness of the child's Behavioral Intervention Plan (BIP) in relationship to the misconduct and whether the BIP is based on research-based practices.
  • In the absence of a BIP, the administration of a Functional Behavioral Assessment (FBA).
  • Whether more information is needed (FBA or other types of evaluation).
 
Standard Two: If the conduct in question was the direct result of the LEA's failure to implement the IEP. Considerations may include:

The IEP team must determine the impact of the failure to implement the student's IEP on the misconduct. It means first determining what was not implemented and then determining its impact on the student's behavior

  • How the area of the IEP not implemented relates to functional skills, social competency and behavior of the child and the misconduct observed.
  • How the area of the IEP not implemented relates to service, goals, positive behavior supports or the BIP.