History of Special Education and Laws

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Liza Fisher

June 30, 2012

SPE/350 Special Education Litigation and Law

Professor: Dr. Gina Warren

History of Special Education Laws

History of Special Education Laws

The fight for equal rights for a disabled person did not start with the passing of a bill. Many people have disabilities and when they started being treated unfairly that is what started the need for equal right legislation for people with disabilities. The legislation of Section 504 Act and ADA Act started when the people who had a handicap came together and began to fight the injustices they were suffering. Parents of children with disabilities started standing up and fighting back, mainly the school systems, writing letters to the government, and having rallies to increase awareness. To fully understand Section 504 and ADA legislation and the groups they cover, how these legislations affected school systems, and the rights and services they guarantee. 

One of the first big laws that assured the rights to a public education for all students’ ages 5-21, was the education for All Handicapped Children Act (EAHCA) was enforced and was mandatory all public schools provide educational services to students with disabilities. It was in 1990 that this act was amended and renamed the Individual with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

IDEA made many changes in special education, one of which was the inclusion of the requirement that schools had to conduct a transition planning for secondary students who would be graduating, not only did IDEA strive to grant equal opportunity to students who where disable, but it also provide additional services such as physical , occupational and speech therapy.

History of Special Education Laws

All of these are provided to the student individual IEP, according to (Martin Ed 1978) each child with a disability have a right to programs that best suited his or her special needs. IEP’S were put in place to help...