What is an IEP in Arizona? An IEP stands for Individualized Education Plan. Students to be eligible to receive an IEP must attend public school or charter schools. A federal law known as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act covers IEPs.
How is IEP Started?
The process of getting an IEP in Arizona starts with either the parents of the student or the school district themselves. They may require or request that the student be screened or tested. After that testing process, there’s a clear picture of the student’s strengths and challenges. Once they have gathered that information, creating an IEP begins. An IEP is a legally binding document that finds all parties to the terms of the agreement. IEP addresses any programs, services, or support needed for that student or to meet any of their unique needs.
Parents Can Get Involved
Parents can also get involved in this process. They can ask for services or an IEP, or they can ask to have their child screened. They can sit in on the annual IEP meeting. Also, they can advocate for their child regarding what services need to be provided. Also, attorneys and special education attorneys may sit in on those meetings and can advocate for parents and their children. Call us and set up a consultation, especially if you are in the Phoenix or Scottsdale area. We are happy to set up a consultation with you here at Chelle Law. We will explain your rights to not only parents but also children. And then also explain the whole IEP process. If you also disagree with the school district’s findings or the programs they have put in place. You also have rights underneath federal law to fight the findings from the school.
What is Special Education Law in Arizona?
Hi, I’m attorney Renee Osipov with Chelle Law in Scottsdale, Arizona. And today, I’m answering the question: what is special education law? Special education law originates in the United States constitution. There are also Supreme Court case laws and federal statutes. Such as section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. And depending on your state, there might also be state statutes or regulations addressing special education and laws within your state. Still, this large body of law mandates that any student ages 3 to 21 with a disability are provided free and appropriate public school education providing special education. Including any services needed to meet those students’ individual needs. The purpose of this is to integrate students with disabilities into society and not to segregate them in any way.
Benefits of Special Education Services in Arizona
At the district level, this typically looks like students can be screened or tested for certain learning disabilities. A physician may already have diagnosed them with a disability. And then, within the school district, they’re provided special education or services related to their unique needs. These can be instructions in the classroom like a normal classroom. It can be, instead of taking notes, they provide the students with an outline test-taking. They can have the test read to them, have extended time, or take it in a quiet area. They can have students pulled out for services such as occupational therapy.
Different Education Plans
They may address special discipline concerns within an IEP or a 504 plan. So, this can get a little bit overwhelming. There are a lot of laws out there. There are IEPs, and there are 504s. What’s the difference? It can get a little confusing and overwhelming for parents. Suppose you live in the Phoenix or Scottsdale area, and you would like a consultation with me. I am happy to address all of your rights within special education services. I was also a teacher for eight years before becoming an attorney. So, I am well versed in special education services and what this looks like at the district level of each school.
What is the difference between an IEP and a 504 Plan in Arizona?
What’s the difference between an IEP and a 504 plan? First, they come from different federal statutes. IEP comes from Individuals with Disability Education Act. And the 504 plans come from section 504 of the rehabilitation act.
A 504 plan focuses more on accommodations. Students who qualify for 504 plan can have any disability that interferes with their ability to learn within the classroom. 504 plans are valid not only during K-12 education but also in college education settings. Parents are also involved less in a 504 or plan legally. However, most schools do include parents in the 504 processes.
IEP and 13 Disabilities Listed in the IDEA Act
In the IEP, however, to qualify, a student must have one of 13 disabilities listed in the IDEA act. If they don’t have one of those disabilities, unfortunately, they do not qualify for an individualized education program. An IEP addresses accommodations and specific services such as special education that the child may need during their education process. And parents are more involved in an IEP. Parents are also required to attend annual meetings. They must be notified too if students are evaluated for an IEP or a 504 plan.
Lastly, IEPs are different from 504 plans. It is because IEPs have specific goals and benchmarks that students are monitored if they’re reaching those. A 504 plan just simply gives accommodations to the children within that setting. And they’re not monitored. There are no goals that they must be hitting. Both create legally binding plans. And both creations of an IEP and a 504 have multiple team members and staff at the school. As I said, most of the time, parents are involved.
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