IDEA

Individuals with Disabilities Education Act

So what is IDEA and who does it covered?

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act is viewed as a "Bill of Rights" for children who have disabilities and their families. It is a federal law that requires schools to serve educational needs of students who have a disability. It protects students who have disabilities and gives the parents a voice in their child's education. Everyone is covered under IDEA.

14 Mandates of IDEA

  1. FAPE (Free and Appropriate Public Education)

    1. Categories of Disabilities
    2. Special Education
    3. Related Services
    4. Child Identification/Child Find
    5. Full Educational Opportunities Goals
    6. Physical Education
    7. Priorities
    8. IEP
    9. Due Process
    10. Protection in Evaluation Procedures
    11. LRE (Least Restricted Environment
    12. Confidentially of Information
    13. Transition

    Amendments of 1997

    In 1997, President Clinton signed amendments to the Individuals with Disabilities Act that targeted on improving the education of children with disabilities by


    • Identifying children with special needs before they enter school and providing services to help them,
    • Developing individualized education programs (IEPs) that focus on improving educational results through the general curriculum,
    • Educating children with disabilities with their nondisabled peers,
    • Setting higher expectations for students who are disabled and ensuring schools are held accountable,
    • Strengthening the role of parents and fostering partnerships between parents and schools,
    • Reducing unnecessary paperwork and other burdens.

    Amendments of 2004

    In December 2004, George W. Bush reauthorized the Individuals with Disabilities Act with No Child Left Behind. Some of the revision included:


    • Having high qualified special education teachers
    • Schools use scientific research based intervention as well the evaluation process
    • Requiring IEP's have measurable goals that are annual
    • Description of child's progress towards the goals

    Amendments of 2008

    The 2008 Amendments focused primarily on:

    • Having parental consent to continue special education and related services
    • Non-attorney representation at due process hearing, state monitoring, technical assistance and enforcement
    • Efforts to employ individuals with disabilities
    • Allocation of funds

    Additional Comments

    • The most recent amendment was passed by Congress in December 2004
    • It is a four part A-D piece of American Legislation
    • IDEA is composed of 6 main elements that capture its main point