The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (
) guarantees the right to a
free and appropriate public education (FAPE) for kids with disabilities. That can include kids with learning and thinking differences.
FAPE is one of the most important legal rights your child has. Knowing what it covers can help you
partner with your child’s school. It can also help you advocate for the services and supports your child needs.
Provide related services to help your child benefit from special education.
Related services may include things like
, counseling or even transportation.
Provide these services at no charge.
that help your child learn and participate in the general education curriculum. Some examples of accommodations include audiobooks, extra time on tests and preferential seating. See a
list of common accommodations and modifications.
Teach your child in the
least restrictive environment (LRE). As much as possible, your child should be learning alongside students who don’t receive special education. Placement in a separate class is only allowed if it’s necessary to meet your child’s needs.
Provide a specific program or class setting that you want for your child. You’re a member of
the team that creates the IEP and can give input. However, FAPE doesn’t guarantee your child a specific educational program, like
Orton–Gillingham instruction. The IEP team makes the final decision.
Guarantee your child a spot in an extracurricular activity or sport. FAPE doesn’t give your child a right to preferential treatment for clubs and sports. However, the school must give your child an equal opportunity to participate.