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Legal Rights Of Students With Disabilities

2964 words - 12 pages

A. Summarize the six key components of the original 1975 IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act).
B. Summarize the key components of the following IDEA reauthorizations: PL 99-457 (1986), PL 101-476, PL 105-17(1997), IDEA 2004: PL 108-446C. Summarize, in sequential order, the mandated IDEA guidelines and processes for referring a student with a suspected disability for evaluation for special education services.
Public Law (PL) 94-142 - Education for All Handicapped Children Act was signed into law on 29 November 1975 by President Gerald Ford and is considered the ‘Bill of Rights’ for children with exceptionalities and their families. The Act provides billions of dollars in federal funding to assist states and local communities in providing special educational benefits and services to eligible children with disabilities. This essay will summarize the six key components of the original 1975 Education for All Handicapped Children Act, the key components of the five amendments to this Act, and finally summarize, in sequential order, the mandated IDEA guidelines and processes for evaluation for special education services.
Despite many legal challenges the following six key components of the original Education for All Handicapped Children Act have endured to this day. The first key component is the principle of a free appropriate public education (FAPE) for all children regardless of the severity of their disability – there are no exceptions. This principle includes all related services that may be required for the child to benefit from special education. These services are to be provided at no additional cost to the parents or guardians of the child with disabilities and may include a private school or facility if deemed appropriate.
The second key component is the principle of least restrictive environment (LRE) that states that children with disabilities will be educated, to the maximum extent possible, with general education students and in environments comparable to a general education classroom setting. Inherent within the concept of LRE is the notion of a continuum of service delivery options that reflect varying degrees of restrictiveness - from least to most integrated – for a child’s educational placement. LRE is based on each child’s individual educational needs not their disability and therefore may preclude more integrative placements with their peers without disabilities.
The third key component is the individualized education program (IEP) which is an individually tailored document describing the educational plan for each child with a disability. To receive federal funds every local or state educational agency must develop an IEP for every child with a disability residing in its geographical boundaries. An IEP includes the following: 1) current level of academic functioning; 2) annual goals and associated instructional objectives; 3) the instructional services to be provided to reach the objectives; 4) the degree to...

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