Mayson v. Teague

749 F.2d 652 (1984)

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Mayson v. Teague

United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
749 F.2d 652 (1984)

  • Written by Alexander Hager-DeMyer, JD

Facts

Wayne Teague (defendant), the superintendent of the Alabama Board of Education, selected hearing officers to conduct due-process hearings under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), formerly known as the Education for All Handicapped Children Act. The officers could be state university employees or employees of a local school system where the child involved was not attending school. Typically, the three-person officer panels consisted of one university educator and two local school-system employees. Lisa Mayson (plaintiff) and William Carpenter (plaintiff) were disabled students in the Mobile public school system who requested due-process hearings because of issues with their individualized education programs. Mayson and Carpenter filed objections to the officer selection methods, arguing that Teague violated the IDEA’s regulations by selecting local school-system employees and university employees involved in special-education policymaking to serve as hearing officers. The due-process hearings were conducted, and the officers ruled against Mayson and Carpenter. Review panels, whose officers were selected in the same way as the initial hearing panels, affirmed the outcomes. Mayson and Carpenter filed suit in federal district court. During trial, evidence showed that Teague and other superintendents worked together to develop and push a unified agenda of special-education policies among state and local educators. The district court ruled in favor of Mayson and Carpenter and issued an order stating that superintendents, state public-school employees, and state-university employees involved in special-education policymaking could not serve as hearing officers. Teague appealed to the Eleventh Circuit.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Johnson, J.)

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