NDSS/NDSC Update on IDEA 2004 Proposed Regs
NDSS and NDSC Submit Joint Comments to Protect Rights and Improve Monitoring and Enforcement of IDEA!
Proposed Regulations for the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
BACKGROUND: IDEA is the primary statute providing and protecting educational rights for students with disabilities. Regulations are issued to provide detailed directions to States on how to implement the statute. First, proposed regulations are issued. Then, following a public comment period, the final regulations are issued.
REGULATIONS: Regulations were already issued for IDEA after amendments were made to the statute in 2004. These are additional proposed regulations that would address issues that were identified during and after that regulatory process, such as the need to improve the monitoring system. The Department states that these proposed regulations are necessary for effective implementation and administration of IDEA.
IMPORTANCE: NDSS and NDSC strongly support the changes to the IDEA monitoring and enforcement provisions in the proposed regulations. In addition, in order to promote transparency and accountability, we recommend that the regulations require States and districts to publicly post and make available to the public the U.S. Department of Education's Decision Letter on the SPP/APR as well as federal or state required corrective actions and other enforcement steps being implemented.
In the various changes that have taken place with respect to IDEA monitoring and enforcement in recent years, one important piece has been lost. Parents and advocates no longer have a direct role in providing information and recommendations to OSEP, the States, or local districts, unless the States and districts choose to invite them to do so. We recommend that the Department add regulatory language requiring that federally-funded Parent Training and Information Centers, Community Parent Resource Centers, Protection and Advocacy Centers, and parent and advocacy organizations and coalitions be involved in the federal and state monitoring processes by having a formal opportunity to share information on systemic issues.
NDSS and NDSC also feel strongly that certain protections must be included in proposed regulation 300.300 to ensure that parents who make a request to revoke consent to special education and related services understand the consequences of that decision and the options that are still available to them. In addition, we urge the U.S. Department of Education to delete the language that would allow States to decide whether parents can be represented by non-attorney advocates at due-process hearings. There is a dearth of free and low fee attorneys. Therefore, this provision would allow States to put many parents in the position of having to choose whether to represent themselves or forgo protecting their children's rights through due process hearings.
The following resources are available for more detailed information on the proposed regulations and the joint NDSS- NDSC position on them:
NDSS-NDSC Public Comments submitted to U.S. Department of Education. See comments at
NDSS-NDSC Summary of Proposed 2008 IDEA Regulations-this document provides background information and summarizes the proposed regulations. It also provides the NDSS- NDSC position on each regulation. Summary at
Complete text of the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in the Federal Register at
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National Down Syndrome Society
666 Broadway, New York, NY 10012
Phone: (800) 221-4602; Fax: (212) 979-2873Web site: http://www.ndss.org
NDSS National Policy Center
5505 Connecticut Avenue, N.W. # 239
Washington, DC 20015-2601
Phone: (800) 743-5657
e-mail: advocacy@...Sandy, Illinois (alpy2@...)
Volunteer Webmaster, www.OurChildrenLeftBehind.com (IDEA & NCLB reauthorization)
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