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Special Education, Section 504 and Lots of Other Stuff


Confidential information can be subpeonaed by a judge/court. Remember. ... Facilities must be comparable for disabled and non-disabled students ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Special Education, Section 504 and Lots of Other Stuff

Special Education, Section 504 and Lots of Other
  • Presented by
  • Dr. Winona Anderson and Sandy Majchrzak

  • Dr. Winona Anderson
  • Worked in schools for 29 years before retiring,
    27 of which was in the Waynesville School
  • Paraprofessional
  • Teacher
  • Counselor
  • School Psychological Examiner
  • Special Education Administrator
  • Taught classes for Lindenwood University and
    Drury University
  • Worked at South Central RPDC since June, 2007

Todays Norms and Expectations
  • Be an ACTIVE Learner
  • Be Responsible for your Own Learning
  • Ask Questions

Focusing on Six Main Topics
  • Confidentiality Issues
  • Special Education Process
  • Section 504 Accommodation Plans
  • Differentiated Learning Styles
  • Changes in IDEA 2004
  • School Improvement Monitoring

  • Can you keep a secret???

  • Information about students at school is
    protected by the Family Educational Rights and
    Privacy Act (FERPA)

Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)
  • Federal law that requires school districts to
    keep information in student education records
  • Applies to all school district personnel and
    Board of Education.
  • Information contained in student education
    records may not be disclosed without written

Education Record
  • An education record is information about an
    identifiable student that is maintained in any
    form by the school district.
  • This includes handwritten records, pictures,
    electronic documents, etc.
  • A person is liable if he/she discloses
    information that is protected

Examples of Education Records
  • Emergency cards
  • E-mails
  • Photographs
  • Grade cards
  • Individual Assignment Grades
  • Discipline records or referrals
  • Suspension/Detention List
  • Evaluation Reports
  • IEP records
  • Videotapes
  • Surveillance tapes
  • Videotapes of student performances
  • Audiotapes of student performances
  • Attendance records
  • Cafeteria Accounts
  • Library Fines or Overdue Book Lists
  • Records of Test Scores

Disclosure of Education Records
  • Education records are disclosed when information
    from the record is shared with another person in
    any way.
  • Sharing includes verbal, showing, faxing,
    e-mailing, etc.

Parents have rights. . .
  • To view the contents of the educational record
  • To have a copy of the contents of the educational
  • Be sure to assure that a parent is a parent

Disability and Medical Information
  • Additional laws govern the release of disability
    and medical information. The laws include
  • Individuals with Disabilities Education Act
    Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act
  • Americans with Disabilities Act
  • Health Insurance Portability and
    Accountability Act (HIPAA)

Disability and Medical Information
  • Medical or disability information is confidential
    and may only be disclosed to school employees or
    school officials who have a need to know the
  • Few people actually have a need to know about a
    students disability or medical information.
  • Staff have a need to know if the information is
    necessary to protect or effectively serve
  • The district leadership determines who has a need
    to know information.

Practical applications of FERPA
  • Confidentiality is extremely important,
    particularly in special education
  • Discussions about students should occur in a
    confidential manner and locationnot hallways,
    social events, ball games, etc.
  • Confidential information can be subpeonaed by a

Remember. . .
  • Share information on a need to know basis with
    only those who have proper authorization
  • When in doubt, dont give it out!

Special Education Process
  • All you ever wanted to know
  • . . . and more!

What is the difference?
  • Disability?
  • Handicap?
  • Educational Disability?

Disability or a handicap? They are not the same.
  • A disability is a loss which affects the persons
    ability to walk, hear, talk, learn, etc.
  • Disability loss
  • A loss is not always handicapping
  • A handicap describes a situation, loss, or
    barrier imposed by society, the environment, or
    oneself which limits a person in some way
  • Handicap limitation

Educational Disability
  • An educational disability
  • A disability (a loss) which
  • Adversely affects LEARNING to a significant
  • Determine eligibility for special education

Not all qualify for special education services. .
  • They have not met the eligibility criteria to
    have an educational disability
  • Outlined in the Special Education Compliance
    Program Review Standards and Indicators
  • Some students may qualify for a Section 504 plan
    if they do not qualify for an IEP
  • Section 504 Accommodation Plans will be discussed
    a bit later

Special Education Compliance Plan
  • Your principal (or designee) should have a copy
    of the district Special Education Compliance Plan
    in their office
  • Contains all of the information in the special
    education process
  • Can download Standards and Indicators from DESE

How many exceptional children are in a normal
  • 10-12 will qualify for special ed services
  • 1-3 will qualify for Section 504
  • 1-3 gifted

Step 1 in the Special Education Process
  • Screen Students who are having difficulty
  • Determine who is having learning problems
  • Check the records
  • Check for physical problems
  • Vision
  • Hearing
  • Health

Step 2
  • Talk to the parents
  • Show concern
  • Ask about the students previous experiences in
  • Have there been frequent moves?
  • What is the academic history of the child?
  • Ask if they know of ways to help

Step 3
  • Alternative Interventions Strategies
  • Try many interventions and document results
  • Talk to senior-level teachers
  • Get ideas from them
  • Implement their suggestions

Step 4
  • If little or no progress is made, it is time to
    seek help from the Student Assistance Team
  • The teacher will need to complete some forms
  • Have your screening information available
  • Know which interventions have been attempted and
    the result of each

Step 4 Review of Current Information/Referral
for Evaluation
  • Its a Team Decision
  • Decisions to move into evaluation or not to move
    into evaluation is a team decision
  • The team may provide additional suggestions for
    the teacher to try before moving into evaluation
  • The classroom teacher is a REQUIRED member of the

Step 5 Moving into Assessment
  • The team may refer the student for individualized
  • Your school district has personnel who conducts
  • Do you know who that personnel is in your school

Eligibility Criteria
  • The state has developed eligibility criteria for
    each of the sixteen categories
  • The student must meet a specific eligibility
    category to be considered for special education

Step 6 Staffing Meeting
  • Review Assessment
  • The team determines if the student meets at least
    one of the eligibility criteria for an
    educational disability
  • The team determines if the student may benefit
    from special education services

Step 7 IEP Meeting
  • If the child qualifies for special ed services,
    the team develops an IEP
  • The classroom teachers input is invaluable in
    writing a successful program for the student
  • If the student needs special education services,
    a placement form is signed by the parent after
    the IEP is developed

The responsibility goes on. . .
  • Most special education students, ages 6-21, will
    be educated in the general education setting at
    least 80 of each school day
  • Often, the student will be in the regular
    classroom with modifications or accommodations

Modifications vs Accommodations
  • Modifications change the intent of the assignment
  • Accommodations level the playing field allowing
    the student to do the same assignment as peers,
    with support

  • Practices and procedures in the areas of
    presentation, response, setting, and
    timing/scheduling that provide equitable
    instructional and assessment access for students
    with disabilities.
  • Accommodations reduce or eliminate the effects of
    a students disability and do not reduce learning

  • Give support but do not change the curriculum
  • All students can benefit from accommodations
  • All students need accommodations from time to time

Examples of Accommodations
  • Make use of nonverbal signals to cue students
    prior to transitions or to focus on teachervary
    the tone of voice
  • Increase teacher proximity to student
  • Provide preferential seatingput distractible
    students with well-focused students
  • Increase physical and/or visual prompting of
  • Keep brevity in mind
  • Provide earphones for students to reduce auditory
    distractions as appropriate
  • Provide more physical work space
  • Have students clear desk of distractors

  • Changing, lowering, or reducing learning or
    assessment expectations
  • May result in implications that could adversely
    affect a student throughout that individuals
    educational career
  • Examples include
  • Requiring a student to learn less material
  • Revising assignments or tests to make them easier

Remember. . .
  • Modifications change the curriculum to fit the
    students learning level
  • Modifications restrict students from learning
    material necessary to pass end of course tests
  • Modifications must be specified and required by
    the IEP

Examples of Modifications
  • Lessen the length of the assignment
  • Test content knowledge, not spelling or ability
    to read
  • Do not require oral reading
  • Assign a project instead of a test

Any questions about. . .
  • Disability vs Handicap
  • Special Education Process
  • Accommodations and Modifications

Section 504
  • What is a Section 504 Accommodation Plan?

So what is Section 504?
  • Federal Legislation passed in 1973
  • First significant federal legislation to prohibit
    discrimination against individuals with
  • Applicable to any program or activity receiving
    Federal financial assistance
  • Includes public schools

What does it say?
  • No otherwise qualified individual with a
    disability. . .shall solely by reason of his or
    her disability, be excluded from the
    participation in, be denied the benefits of, or
    be subjected to discrimination under any program
    or activity receiving Federal financial

What does that mean?
  • Any person that has a disability from the ages of
    birth to death (students, parents, or employees)
    may not be excluded from any activities or
    opportunity because of their disability

Isnt that what IDEA does already?
  • The coverage of Section 504 is broader than the
    coverage under IDEA

Section 504 or IDEA?
  • Students who qualify for IDEA are protected under
    Section 504 also

General Population
Major differences between IDEA and Section 504
  • IDEA
  • Individualized Education Programs (IEPs)
  • Educationally Disabled
  • Ages 3-21
  • Adaptations
  • 13 Categories
  • Partially funded
  • Mediation3 person hearing panelstate/federal
  • Requires the need for special ed services
  • Section 504
  • Section 504 Accommodation Plans
  • Handicapped
  • Birth to death
  • Accommodations
  • Many ways to qualify
  • Not funded
  • Hearing officer-Office of Civil Rights-Federal
  • Does not require a need for special ed services

Definition of a Handicap according to Section 504
  • Under Section 504, a person is considered to be
    handicapped if that person
  • Has a physical or mental impairment which
    substantially limits one or more of that persons
    major life functions
  • Has a record of such as impairment
  • Is regarded as having such an impairment

A physiological or physical impairment is defined
  • Any physiological or physical disorder or
    condition, cosmetic disfigurement, or anatomical
    loss affecting one or more of the body systems

Mental or psychological impairment includes. . .
  • Mental retardation, organic brain syndrome,
    emotional or mental illness, or specific learning

Major life activities
  • Functions such as caring for ones self,
    performing manual tasks, or performing basic
    skills the average person in the general
    population can do

Examples of Major Life Functions
  • Learning
  • Working
  • Talking
  • Seeing
  • Hearing
  • Speaking
  • Walking
  • Standing
  • Sitting
  • Reaching
  • Stooping
  • Breathing

Has a record of such an impairment. . .
  • Means having a history of, or has been
    misclassified as having, a mental or physical
    impairment that substantially limits one or more
    major life activity.

Is regarded as having an impairment
  • A physical or mental impairment that does not
    substantially limit major life activities but
    that is treated by a recipient as constituting
    such a limitation
  • A physical or mental impairment that
    substantially limits major life activities as a
    result of the attitudes of others toward the
  • Has none of the impairments but is treated by a
    recipient as having such as impairment

A physical or mental impairment which
substantially limits
  • Section 504 defines substantially limiting as
    being unable to perform a major life activity the
    AVERAGE person in the general population can
    perform, or being restricted as to the duration
    and manner of that major life activity.

Section 504 covers regular education,
non-academic programs, and extracurricular
  • Honor rollsschool cannot deny to disabled
    students with sufficiently high G. P. A.s
  • Access to field trips and other trips
  • Special diets must be provided
  • Cannot shorten day of disabled students in most

Physical accessibility, facilities, and
  • Section 504 students cannot be required to take
    longer bus rides than non-disabled students
  • School facilities must have equal access for
    students, parents, and patrons
  • Facilities must be comparable for disabled and
    non-disabled students

Examples of Individuals Who May Be
Covered--Section 504
  • Students with a disability which significantly
    impacts their learning but who may not qualify
    under IDEA eligibility
  • Students with health problems such as asthma,
    ADHD, epilepsy, diabetes, or cardiac problems
  • Students with communicable diseases, such as AIDS
    or hepatitis
  • Students with orthopedic problems who do not need
    special education

ExamplesIndividuals Who May Not Be Covered
  • Students who have a low-average IQ but are
    failing in school
  • Low-average IQ is not a disability
  • A student with a disability who is making
    satisfactory progress in school and needs no
  • Just because a student has a documented
    disability or a diagnosis DOES NOT mean they
    automatically qualify for Section 504

Others not covered. . .
  • Individuals engaging in illegal use of
    drugshowever, addiction may qualify as a
  • Environmental, cultural, and economic
    disadvantaged are not covered
  • Certain conditions such as homosexuality,
    kleptomania, pyromania, etc.

What if we dont follow the students Section 504
  • Families have a right to file a request for a
    hearing with the Districts Compliance Officer.
    If unsatisfied, the family may request an
    impartial due process hearing with an impartial
    outside hearing officer.

Is that all?
  • Families may also file a formal complaint with
    the U.S. Office of Civil Rights. If the OCR
    agrees with the family, the OCR will inform the
    parent they have the right to sue the district
    and the individuals involved.

So. . . .
  • Use your common sense
  • Follow the guidelines
  • Dont give-in just because its easy
  • Do what is best for kids
  • Seek legal advice for difficult cases

Any questions?
Not all students learn the same
  • Not all adults learn the same either
  • When you read, do you like
  • The TV on?
  • The radio on at a regular volume?
  • Soft music playing in the background?
  • No noise within 2 miles?

Why is this important?
  • When developing your teaching plans, try to tap
    into as many different intelligence areas for
    learning as possible.
  • Teachers most often teach using the modalities by
    which they learn
  • Modifications are often needed to match the
    students learning styles

Changes in IDEA 2004
  • Reauthorization occurs every five years.
  • This information is taken from the following DESE
    website http//dese.mo.gov/divspeced

Eligibility Criteria
  • Other Health Impaired
  • Definition was expanded
  • Tourette Syndrome was added to the definition
  • Mental Retardation
  • Now called Intellectual Disability in State Plan

Related Services
  • Related services are services that assist a child
    with a disability to benefit from special
  • Do not include a medical device that is
    surgically implanted, the optimization of that
    devices functioning, maintenance of that device,
    or the replacement of that device
  • Schools do not have to purchase such a device as
    a related service
  • The distinguishing factor between services that
    are covered until IDEA and those not covered are
    the level of expertise required

Related Services (continued)
  • Does not limit
  • Right of child to other related services
  • Responsibility of public agency to monitor and
    maintain certain medication devices
  • Breathing devices
  • Nutrition devices
  • Device for operation of bodily functions
  • Responsibility continues for routine checking of
    external components of surgically implanted

Highly Qualified Teachers
  • IDEA defined Core Academic Subjects
  • English, reading or language arts
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Foreign languages
  • The arts
  • Social Studies

Highly Qualified Teachers
  • A special ed teacher AT ANY GRADE LEVEL can be
    considered to be HQ if he/she
  • Is not teaching a core academic subject
  • Does not give a grade
  • Is not the teacher of record
  • All others questions, consult the DESE website

Response to Intervention (RtI)Early Intervening
Services (EIS)
  • RtI training is available through DESE website
  • EISdistricts may use up to 15 of their Part B
    federal funds to develop and provide early
    intervening services to non-disabled students
  • Identify students early (K-3)
  • Provide services by providing academic and
    behavioral support

  • Timeline60 days
  • Exceptions to timelines
  • Parent repeatedly fails or refuses to produce
    child for the evaluation
  • Child transfers to another district during an
  • Extended school breaks that occur during the
    evaluation period
  • Extended student illness during the evaluation
  • All exceptions to the timelines must be
    documented in the students record

  • May not be conducted more than once a year unless
    the parent and public agency agree otherwise
  • Must be conducted at least once every 3 years
    unless the parent and public agency agree reeval
    is not necessary

Reevaluation/Summary of Performance
  • For graduates from high school with a regular
    diploma or student exiting the system at age 21
  • Reevaluation not required when student with a
  • Summary of Performance required for a student
    with a disability when

Independent Educational Evaluation (IEE)
  • Parent entitled on only one IEE at public expense
    for each evaluation agency conducts with which
    the parent disagrees
  • Any party may present results of IEE in a Due
    Process Hearing
  • Agency must consider results of privately funded
    evaluation, if it meets agency criteria
  • Parent not required to share results of privately
    funded evaluation with public agency, but not
    considered IEE

IEP Meeting Excusals
  • Attendance at the meeting of a team member can be
  • Prior to the meeting, the parent and school must
    agree in writing to excuse the team member(s)
    from the meeting

IEP Meeting Amendments
  • Conditions
  • Initial IEP meeting and Annual review meetings
    must be held. Amendments may only be made in the
  • Amendments made either by
  • Holding an IEP meeting, OR
  • Parent and school may agree not to convene IEP
    meeting to amend childs IEP
  • Copy of the IEP with the amendments incorporated
    must be provided at parent request
  • IEP team members informed of any amendments

IEP Content
  • The statement of present levels must describe the
    childs present levels of academic achievement
    and functional performance
  • Short-term objectives and benchmarks are required
    only for children with disabilities who take
    alternate assessments aligned to alternate
    achievement standards (MAP-A)

In-state Transfer Students
  • Student with known or suspected disability
    enrolls from another Missouri district
  • Implement the IEP
  • IEP in hand or interviews with parent, student,
    previous school district officials to determine
    IEP content
  • Accept of reject eligibility determination
  • If reject, initiate reevaluation

Out-of-State Transfers
  • Student with known or suspected disability
    enrolls from another state
  • IEP in hand
  • Comparable services similar or equivalent
  • Initiate evaluation, if determined necessary
  • Develop, adopt, implement new IEP, if appropriate
  • Without IEP
  • Place in regular education until evaluation
    conducted and IEP developed
  • Evaluation is initial evaluation

TransfersOther Considerations
  • Summer transfers
  • Must have a means for determining whether the
    children who move into the state during the
    summer are children with disabilities and for
    ensuring that an IEP is in effect at the
    beginning of the school year
  • Transferring the childs records
  • Request records within 2 days of enrollment
  • Send records within 5 days of receiving a request
    for records

Parentally-Placed Children in Private Schools
  • Responsibility for child find, identification and
    provision of services has changed from district
    of residence to district in which private school
    is located
  • Statute and regulations identify requirements for
    consultation with representatives of private

Schools can set stricter guidelines
  • If you have Compliance questions, please call
    Bruce Renner
  • BruceRenner_at_missouristate.edu
  • 417-829-5095

Special Education Monitoring
  • Limited number of schools will have on-site
  • State Performance Plan Targets and Monitoring
  • Priorities and Indicators
  • See the 20 Indicators http//dese.mo.gov/divspeced

Any questions?
  • Do you still have questions that have been
  • Do you have other questions?

A thought in closing. . .
  • I long to accomplish a great and noble task, but
    it is my chief duty to accomplish small tasks, as
    if they were great and noble.
  • --Helen Keller

Evaluation of Workshop
  • For additional questions or help call Winona
    Anderson or Sandy Majchrzak
  • South Central RPDC
  • 1-800-667-0665
  • sandym_at_mst.edu
  • awinona_at_mst.edu
  • Contact Bruce Renner with Compliance questions
  • BruceRenner_at_missouristate.edu
  • 417-829-5095
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