May a group home or other residential "parent" make an initial referral? Who may make an initial referral? Is the "kinship" parent considered a “surrogate” like a foster parent?
A group home staff member can temporarily serve as surrogate and refer a child only if the child is considered homeless. The guardian who has the educational responsibility for the child can make the referral.
When a parent or teacher makes a referral, this school district has a policy in place to determine when the referral timeline begins. What is the federal regulation on when this timeline begins. For example, can the principal not act on the referral for 2 months?
An SAU's policy must define what constitutes the initiation of a referral, such as the signature and date put on the referral by the Principal. That date would start the 15 school day timeline to send parents the consent for evaluation or have an IEP Team meeting to discuss the referral.
See MUSER §IV.2.E(2) and (3).