You are here

Dispute Resolution

Welcome to the Special Education Dispute Resolution website. The links below offer information on dispute resolution options available to parents and school districts regarding disputes that may arise during the Special Education process. In addition to information on Mediation, State Complaints, and Due Process Complaints, please explore our resources for early dispute resolution, understanding your rights, and important Special Education laws and regulations.


Mediation is an informal, voluntary process in which a neutral person assists the parties in communicating and exploring possible options for resolving conflict.  The goal of special education mediation is to help the parties reach their own mutually acceptable resolution of the disputed issues related to a student’s special education services.
Click here for more info on Mediation.

Model forms (use not required):
Mediation Request Form (PDF)
Mediation Request Form (Word)
Solicitud de Mediacion (PDF)

State Complaint

A State Complaint is a written complaint requesting an investigation of any alleged violations of the IDEA requirements.  A State Complaints Officer will conduct an informal investigation, considering the information and interviews of the parties involved, and issue a written decision.
Click here for more info on State Complaints.

Model Forms (use not required):
State Complaint Form (PDF)
Queja con el Estado (PDF)

Due Process Complaint

A Due Process complaint is a process involving an Administrative Law Judge who conducts a hearing, much like a formal court proceeding. The ALJ considers the information and testimony offered by each side and issues a written decision.
Click here for more info on Due Process Complaints.

Model Forms (use not required):
Due Process Complaint Form (PDF)
Due Process Complaint Form (Word)
Queja de Debido Proceso (PDF)

Restraint and Seclusion

A state complaint may be filed by an individual or organization who believes a school district or board of cooperative educational services is not following the Protection of Persons from Restraint Act (“PPRA”), such as where a school employee may have improperly restrained or secluded a student. 

Contact Us

For more information, or to speak with someone about dispute resolution options, contact:

Exceptional Student Services Unit, 1560 Broadway, Suite 1100, Denver, CO 80202 | Phone: 303-866-6694, Fax: 303-866-6767

Brandon Edelman, Esq.
Supervisor, Dispute Resolution
Email Brandon Edelman

Tom Treinen, Esq.
State Complaints Officer
Email Tom Treinen

Ashley Schubert, Esq.
State Complaints Officer
Lindsey Watson, Esq.
State Complaints Officer

Jennifer Woods
Dispute Resolution Paralegal & Coordinator
Email Jennifer Woods

Cici Lyman
Program Support
Email Cici Lyman




Find what you were looking for?


If you have problems with broken links or accessing the content on this page, please contact our web content coordinator Amanda Timmerman at Please copy the URL link for this page into the email when referencing the problem you are experiencing.