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School Age

Parents play an important role in their child’s education. It is essential for parents to be knowledgeable of school programs, including special education services which may benefit their child. If your child (3 – 22 years) is experiencing academic challenges at school, or you suspect your child has a disability, help is available through the special education program in your local school district. Your child will be referred to a team of professionals for assessment to determine eligibility. For a complete listing of school districts contact the San Diego County Office of Education or Imperial County Office of Education

If your child is determined eligible for services, an Individualized Education Program (IEP) must be in place in accordance with the law. An IEP is an important legal document. It defines your child’s strengths, learning needs, the services the school will provide and how progress will be measured. When your child turns 16, an Individual Transition Plan (ITP) is required by law. The ITP becomes part of the IEP legal document. If you child is not eligible for an IEP, a 504 Plan may be an option.

The IEP must be designed to provide the child with a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE). Key considerations in developing an IEP include assessing students in all areas related to the suspected disability, considering access to the general curriculum, considering how the disability affects the students learning, developing goals and objectives that make the biggest difference for the student, and ultimately choosing a placement in the least restrictive environment.

We hope you find the resources provided below helpful. We encourage you to contact us if you required additional assistance.

Individualized Education Program (IEP)
Section 504 Accommodations

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 states that “no qualified individual with a disability in the United States shall be excluded from, denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity that either receives Federal financial assistance or is conducted by any Executive agency or the United States Postal Service.”

Section 504 as it relates to education: If you have a child who does not qualify for special education but has a mental or physical impairment which substantially limits one or more major life activities, including learning, that child may qualify for special help in a regular classroom setting under Section 504. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act requires a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE).