There are federal and state laws that ensure a free, appropriate public education and that protect the civil rights of all individuals with disabilities. The laws also provide a system whereby complaints about a student’s identification, program, placement or civil rights may be resolved.
- IDEA: The Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act guarantees a free appropriate public education from birth to 21. IDEA legislates financial assistance to provide special education services to students with disabilities. More information can be found here.
- The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504)prohibits discrimination against any person with a disability in federal agencies and other federally-subsidized entities. This law extends protection to people working for any group receiving federal funding, including public schools, colleges, and in some cases even private schools.
- The Rehabilitation Act-Section 511-Workforce Innovation & Opportunity Act (WIOA) went into effect July 22, 2016. Individuals with disabilities, especially youth with disabilities, must be afforded a full opportunity to prepare for, obtain, maintain advance in, or reenter competitive integrated employment.
www.nj.gov/njded/ &nbpsp;- Search – Section 511
- The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)expands the rights from the Rehabilitation Act to private entities by requiring employers with 15 or more employees to provide qualified individuals with disabilities an equal opportunity to benefit from the full range of employment opportunities that are available to others. It requires employers to make reasonable accommodations and/or provide supports or services to the known limitations of the person with disabilities so that the person may fully participate in the work environment, unless the accommodations would result in an undue hardship for the employer.
Dept. of Labor: http://www.dol.gov/odep/ Search – ADA, Search – Section 511
- SEPAG (Special Education Parent Advisory Group) Guide http://www.spanadvocacy.
org/sites/default/files/files/ SEPAG%20Guide%20Updated%208-16 -17.pdf
- All school districts in New Jersey are required to “ensure that a special education parent advisory group is in place in the district to provide input to the district on issues concerning students with disabilities” (N.J.A.C. 6A:14-1.2h).
- N.J.A.C. 6A:14 http://www.state.nj.us/education/ Search -PRISE
- Part of the New Jersey Administrative Code called PRISE, spells out parents’ and students’ rights as regards special education. Parents must receive a copy of the code at their child’s IEP meeting.
- Dyslexia Laws
Additional useful documents (i.e., Dear Colleague Letters, etc.) from the federal government: