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Special Education Law

What is FAPE and how does it help special needs children?

On Behalf of | Jun 4, 2020 | Special Education |

Orange County parents whose children are reaching school age may be overwhelmed by the amount of research they need to do in order to help ensure their children receive as many educational benefits as possible. For instance, what is FAPE and how does it apply to their children? If a child fits the qualifications of the law regarding special needs and education, the right to free and appropriate public education is one of a child’s most important rights.

Under FAPE, which is the acronym for Free Appropriate Public Education, the school district must do several things for a special needs child. It must provide certain modifications and/or accommodations to allow him or her to join in the general education curriculum for the school. It must also provide specially designed instruction and any services related to it to give the child the best chance at a successful academic career.

Of course, every child is unique, so the school must come up with an Individualized Education Program. Even though a child may need special considerations to get an education, that does not mean he or she should be in a restrictive environment. A child should be able to mix with the other students as much as possible in order to get a well-rounded education experience. By this point, some Orange County parents may be wondering how much this will cost them, and the answer is that it will not cost them anything.

Even though the right to free and appropriate public education requires school districts to provide the above, they do not always do so without issues. Some of the disputes and controversies that can arise between parents and schools is the definition of “reasonable” when it comes to what a school wants to or is willing to provide. Parents may be forced to fight for their children’s rights, and considering what is at stake, it would prove invaluable to work with an attorney experienced in special education law.