Law: IDEA, Section 504, ESSA, ADA, MARSE

There are many laws and rules that relate to the education for students with disabilities.

State level:

Federal level:

  • The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) is a civil rights law ensuring children with disabilities the right to be educated. IDEA governs how states and public agencies provide early intervention, special education and related services to more than 6.5 million eligible infants, toddlers, children and youth with disabilities.
  • Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) is the main federal law that funds education.  The law includes accountability standards, college/career readiness goals to improve education outcomes for all students regardless of race, income, background, or where they live. ESSA supports standards-based education reform, which is based on the belief that setting high standards and establishing measurable goals can improve individual outcomes in education. The Act requires states to develop assessments in basic skills to be given to all students in certain grades, if those states are to receive federal funding for schools.
  • Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in programs and activities, public or private, that receive federal financial assistance.
    • Online OCR Complaint Form
    • Case Processing Manual provides OCR with the procedures to promptly and effectively investigate and resolve complaints, compliance reviews and directed investigations to ensure compliance with the civil rights laws enforced by OCR.
  • Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a wide-ranging civil rights law that prohibits discrimination based on disability.
  • The Rehabilitation Act is the Federal legislation that authorizes the programs of vocational rehabilitation, supported employment, independent living, and client assistance.
  • Carl D. Perkins Vocational and Technical Education Act aims to increase the quality of technical education within the United States in order to help the economy.
  • Olmstead Decision is a Supreme Court ruling that says under ADA people with disabilities have a qualified right to receive state funded supports and services in the community rather than institutions.

Looking for more information on the law?  Help is available from these organizations.

Michigan Resources

Nationwide Resources

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