Communicating with your child’s school is important to ensure that their needs and your child’s needs are met. Engaging with your school enables you to be a better advocate for your child. Special rights and laws are in place to give your child the best education possible. Be sure to familiarize yourself with this information.
Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
This federal law ensures that all children with disabilities have access to a free appropriate public education and guarantees their right to special education services. Any child who has a disability and needs special education is eligible.
Rehabilitation Act of 1973 – Section 504
This federal law protects students with disabilities in federally funded programs, including public schools, by ensuring equal access to an education. Anyone with an impairment, physical or mental, that limits at least one major life activity is eligible for an accommodation.
Individualized Health Care Plan (IHP)
A document stating specific instructions for meeting a student’s medical needs at school.
Download a sample IHP.
504 Accommodation Plan
A legal document listing specific accommodations for a disabled student. Such accommodations may include:
- An extra set of books at home/school
- A rolling backpack
- Modified physical education
- Extra time to complete assignments when absent
Individual Education Plan (IEP)
A legal document listing accommodations for a student who needs special education services due to his/her disability. Such services may include:
- Individualized classroom behavior plan
- Small-group testing
- Increased time for tests
Engaging with your School
Communicating with your child’s day care center or school is important to ensure that your child's needs are being met. This is a critical step in advocating for your child.