United States District Court, E.D. Michigan, Southern Division
A.A. by and through his Parents and Next Friends, E.A. and M.A., Plaintiff,
Walled Lake Consolidated Schools, Defendant.
OPINION & ORDER DENYING DISTRICT'S MOTION TO
COMPEL EXAMINATION OF STUDENT AND GRANTING, IN PART,
PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO EXCLUDE THE DISTRICT'S
F. Cox, United States District Judge.
A.A. (“the Student”), by and through his Parents
and Next Friends, E.A. and M.A. (“the Parents”)
filed this action against Defendant Walled Lake Consolidated
Schools (the “District”). After having litigated
a dispute over the proper placement of the Student in the
Defendant school district before an administrative law judge,
Plaintiff filed this action against the District under the
Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, 20 U.S.C. §
1401 et seq. (“the IDEA”). The District
wants the Student placed in a classroom for cognitively
impaired students at the District's Meadowbrook
Elementary School (a “CI Classroom”), while the
Student's Parents disagree and want him placed in a
general education classroom at the District's Keith
matter is before the Court as to two discovery motions: 1)
the District's motion seeking to compel a mental and
physical examination of the Student; and 2) Plaintiff's
Motion to Exclude the Districts' experts and their
reports. Both motions were heard on April 5, 2017. As
explained below, the Court shall DENY the District's
motion seeking to compel an examination of the Student and
shall GRANT Plaintiff's Motion to Exclude the
District's Experts and their Reports, to the extent that
the Court shall strike the “expert reports”
provided by the District in this matter and shall limit the
testimony that may be offered by the District's experts
to: 1) the facts and opinions upon which they testified to
during the administrative hearing; and 2) the facts and
opinions upon which they testified to during their
depositions in this case.
Student and his parents live within the District's
geographical boundaries. The Student is a child with Down
syndrome and Speech Apraxia.
of 2015, the District addressed the Student's placement
and services for the 2015-2016 school year. The
District's May 2015 IEP placed the Student in a CI
classroom for cognitively impaired students at the
District's Meadowbrook Elementary School. The
Student's Parents disagreed with that IEP and wanted the
Student to be placed in a general education classroom at the
District's Keith Elementary School.
April 1, 2016, the District filed for a due process hearing,
to resolve the dispute over the Student's placement. The
District's due process complaint was forwarded to the
Michigan Administrative Hearing System for hearing and was
assigned to Administrative Law Judge Kandra Robbins.
September 2, 2016, the ALJ issued her “Decision And
Order” (D.E. No. 5-2) wherein she concluded in the
District's favor that the Student should be educated in
the CI Classroom at Meadowbrook.
December 1, 2016, Plaintiff filed this action in federal
court. The District filed a Motion to Dismiss, which this
Court denied in an Opinion & Order on June 15, 2016.
Second Scheduling Order, issued in this matter on December
14, 2017, provides that: 1) witness lists were due February
1, 2018; 2) Discovery closes March 1, 2018, and any discovery
motions are due two weeks before that (February 15, 2018); 3)
dispositive motions are due April 2, 2018; and 4) final
pretrial conference is August 21, 2018. (D.E. No. 74).
February 1, 2018, Plaintiff filed a Witness List and
“Designation of Experts and Disclosure of Expert
Testimony” pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 26(a)(2). It named
two experts: 1) Dr. Carol Quick, who had previously testified
at the administrative hearing; and 2) Dr. Kathleen Whitbread,
Ph.D. Plaintiff provided a detailed report from Dr.
Whitbread, that explains what her opinions are and why she
holds them. (D.E. Nos. 76 & 77). As to Dr. Quick,
Plaintiff advised the District that “[h]er testimony is
set forth in the due process hearing.” (D.E. No. 78 at
Pg ID 2829).
February 1, 2018, the District filed its Witness List (D.E.
No. 77), wherein it identified two “expert witnesses,
” that it may call at trial: 1) Aubry Dodge; and 2) Dr.
Laurie Lundblad. (D.E. No. 77 at Pg ID 2826-27).
February 2, 2018, the District filed “Expert
Reports” from Dr. Laurie Lundblad and Aubry Dodge,
without the signatures of either of the experts. The District
later re-filed those same reports on February 8th
and 12th, with the signatures of those persons.
(D.E. Nos. 81 & 82).
The District's Motion To Compel Mental And Physical