By Jim Gerl, Esq.
November 12, 2014
Today, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights and Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, together with the U.S. Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division, issued joint guidance about the rights of public elementary and secondary students with hearing, vision, or speech disabilities to effective communication.
The guidance is intended to help schools understand and comply with federal legal requirements on meeting the communication needs of students with disabilities.
The guidance consists of the following documents which are linked here:
- a Dear Colleague Letter and an attachment with frequently asked questions and answers. The agencies also provide a quick reference fact sheet.
The guidance covers when auxiliary aids and services must be provided and concludes with dispute resolution mechanisms available if parents disagree with school decisions.
If you have a child with hearing speech or vision disabilities or if your district provides services to these children, you should carefully review these documents.