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Understanding Your Education Rights part 2!
A 504 plan is protected under a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination due to disability in public schools, among other entities. For students with disabilities that require specially designed instruction the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) controls the procedures.
To qualify for an Individual Education Plan or IEP, students must have a disability that falls into one of 13 categories: Autism, deaf-blindness, deafness, emotional disturbance, hearing impairment, intellectual disability, multiple disabilities, orthopedic impairment, other health impairment (includes ADHD), specific learning disability (dyslexia, dysgraphia, and others), speech or language impairment, TBI, and visual impairment.
A 504 plan does not provided specifically designed instruction like an IEP does. It provides accommodations that aid in improving the learning environment. A 504 plan should be updated annually.
Examples of accommodations in 504 plans include: Preferential seating, extended time on tests or assignments, reduced homework or classwork, verbal, visual or technology aids, modified textbooks, behavior management support, adjusted class schedules or grading, verbal testing, excused lateness, absence, or missed classwork, nurse’s office visits, occupational or physical therapy. There are many more options for accommodations. A comprehensive list can be found at School Accommodations and Modification
The law specifically allows others who “have knowledge or special expertise regarding the child” to partipate on the IEP team. Family, friends, school personnel, therapists and other advocates. You can invite any support people to attend meetings.
The process for qualifying for an IEP or 504 Plan is long and stressful. Please contact INDEx for more information about Section 504 or if you would like assistance in developing an IEP or 504 Plan
Call 509-606-4639 to schedule an appointment.
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