The Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA) is the law in place
today that governs the education of exceptional children. Prior to the All Handicapped Childrens
Act of 1975 there were no laws to assist exceptional children until the All Handicapped
Children’s Act of 1975. George Bush changes this act in 1994. This act was further modified in
2004 to become what educators use today. IDEIA has several principles that help shape the way
educators teach children with disabilities. The principles include Zero Reject, Nondiscriminatory
Evaluation, Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE), Least Restrictive Environment (LRE),
Procedural Safeguards, and Shared Decision Making.
The first principle in IDEIA is Zero Reject. This standard is based on the idea that
schools must educate every student, regardless of disabilities. It is the duty of the school to
provide special education to those who need it between the ages of six and seventeen. Along
with that, the Zero Reject has the child find system requirement. The child find system requires
each state’s education agency to locate, identify, and evaluate all students who have suspected
disabilities from birth up to age 21 (Heward, 16).
Students with disabilities faced several challenges before IDEIA became law. In the
beginning, it was difficult for parents to know specifics about the new law. This confusion led to
a lot miscommunication between parents and educators. Barbara Anderson, a parent of a student
with disabilities told her story at a hearing discussing zero reject. She said, “We had no idea
what the law was...and even though we begged and begged for them to do something with him to
help him learn, t...
... middle of paper ...
... when deciding which
paths to take when planning and implementing special education services. When a teacher is
deciding where to place a student with disabilities, it is imperative that they get the parents input
when deciding on the most beneficial and appropriate plan for the student (Heward, 20).
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004 completely
changed the way schools handle students with disabilities. Before IDEIA and the previous All
Handicapped Children’s Act of 1975, students with disabilities faced many challenge when
perusing an education. Principles like Zero Reject, Nondiscriminatory Evaluation, Free
Appropriate Public Education, Least Restrictive Environment, Procedural Safeguards, and shared
decision-making make up the bulk of IDEIA. The principles combine to provide a better
education for those with disabilities.
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