Updated August 17, 2020
Students with disabilities are particularly vulnerable, and continuing support from the state’s educators is critical during these uncertain times. Local education agencies (LEAs) that physically close schools should focus their planning efforts on how to continue serving these students, by tailoring distance learning to provide educational benefits to students with disabilities, to the greatest extent practicable under the circumstances.
Supporting Students with Disabilities
Guidance from the California Department of Education
LEAs must provide students with disabilities (SWD) with a free appropriate public education (FAPE) consistent with their individualized education program (IEP) and meeting other procedural requirements under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and California law.
The California Department of Education (CDE) posted guidance and additional information to assist LEAs in this work. Additionally, the CDE extended the timelines for Data Informed Non-Compliance (DINC), CCEIS, significant disproportionality (SIG DIS), and special education plans (SEP).
- Resources for Special Education Plan (SEP) Monitoring
- Significant Disproportionality Comprehensive Coordinated Early Intervening Services (CCEIS) Documents and Forms
Guidance from the U.S. Department of Education
On March 21, the U.S. Department of Education issued guidance on serving children with disabilities during the COVID-19 crisis. The guidance notes that students with disabilities still must be provided a free and appropriate public education (FAPE), and suggests this may require educators to look at an individual student’s individualized education plan (IEP) to determine what services might be provided. The Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) released several additional documents this spring and summer in response to questions concerning the implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), including dispute resolution, use of funds, procedural safeguards, and timelines.
- Practical tips for instructional minutes requirements for students with disabilities.
- The Center on Online Learning and Students with Disabilities from OSEP provides guidance for parents and teachers.
- Common Sense Media’s Best Special Education Apps and Websites offers information on an array of tools.
Phone: (650) 802-5515