Your Special Child Has a Right To Customized Education

Education is one of the most important things that you can give to your child. But when you have a child with a disability, it can be difficult to know how much to allow them to be integrated into regular ed classes and when to seek out specialized instruction for him. Some parents of disabled children choose to have them privately tutored or put into specialized group programs. If you choose to enroll your child in the public-school system, it can be helpful to know what rights your child has to specialized education.

A federal law called the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, also called IDEA was passed in 1975. This act enables children with disabilities to be educated for free and receive appropriate education just like normal developing children.

The section 504 of the U.S. Rehabilitation Act of 1973, also clearly states that students with physical or mental health impairments are entitled to be in public schools or federally funded private schools. These students also have the right to customized educational plans to make sure that they are treated fairly in school.

Your Special Child Has a Right To Customized Education


In some cases, customized education is essential for a disabled child to receive a similar level of education as other children. According to Professor Anne M. Hocutt of the Department of Educational and Psychological Studies of the University of Miami, 34.9% of children with disabilities attend regular classes. With the proper accommodations and modifications disabled children can oftentimes benefit from the same coursework as other children.

According to Tammy Reynolds, B.A., C.E. Zupanick, Psy.D. and Mark Dombeck, Ph.D., attending regular classes may benefit disabled children in other ways. For example placing your child in a regular classroom may help them to develop theri social skills and can expose them to diversity that they may not have access to in private classes. It may also inspire them and challenge them to excel and strengthen their abilities.

According to Edward Bray, the Director of Public Policy and Advocacy for Learning Ally, the IDEA has already been improved and expanded to give children with special needs a full educational life program that will greatly help them even after going to school.

To further widen your knowledge about the federal special education law, here are some of your rights that you need to know.

  • Access to educational records and the right to get an explanation of your child’s education records.
  • Independent Educational Evaluation (IEE) is an evaluation of your child’s skills made by someone who is not the school’s employee.
  • Parent participation in meetings.
  • Prior written notice in case of any changes of their services to your child’s education.
  • “Stay Put” rights when there are disputes.

With these safeguards provided by the IDEA, your child will be able to get the best education that he needs. Knowing your child’s rights will give you peace of mind and a sense of fulfillment that can never be replaced by anything.