Excerpt from Randy Chapman's Ability Law Blog: (click for entire article)
A pet peeve of mine is the common misperception that the manifestation determination review process is a “hearing.” The IDEA requires that when a student with a disability has his/her educational placement changed for a disciplinary reason that a meeting be held to determine the relationship between the student’s misconduct and the student’s disabilities (see Discipline and Disability: Determining When a Child’s Misbehavior in School is Related to Their Disability). That process is referred to as a Manifestation Determination (MD) review. The team that conducts that review is composed of the relevant members of the student’s IEP team. Which members of the IEP team are relevant is determined by the student’s parents and the school district. Thus, the MD review team is determined by both the parents and the school district. The MD review team meeting is just that- a meeting. It is not a hearing.