The education system can be challenging for the parent of a child with special healthcare needs. Negotiating the maze of special education supports and knowing how, why and when to advocate for an IEP, a 504 plan or behavior plan requires that you become familiar with special education laws and your child's rights.

For school age children, we’ll help you with resources for:

  • Legislation: Find an overview of the major federal legislation that guarantees equal educational opportunity for students with disabilities.
  • IDEA - Individuals with Disabilities Education Act: This landmark legislation guides how states, school districts and public agencies provide special education and related services to more than 6.5 million children with disabilities. Find a sample letter requesting special education supports and special education advocates.
  • IEP - Individualized Education Program: Students who qualify for special education under IDEA must have a written document detailing how they will receive a free appropriate public education designed to meet their unique needs. Find a sample letter requesting special education supports and special education advocates.
  • Due Process: IDEA guarantees that parents have a right to appeal recommendations by school districts. Find special education advocates.
  • Section 504: This civil rights law, part of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, prohibits discrimination on the basis of a disability. Students who may not qualify for special education services under IDEA may be covered under Section 504. Find a sample letter requesting 504 supports and special education advocates.
  • Behavior Plan: If behavior interferes with your child's learning or with the learning of others, a behavior plan should be developed. Find special education advocates.
  • School Health Plan: A plan may be developed by the school nurse as part of your child’s IEP or Section 504 plan to specifically address medical needs in the school setting.
  • Private & Charter Schools, Scholarships: Learn about your rights if you choose to place your child with a disability in a private or charter school. Find out about the Autism Scholarship Program and the Jon Peterson Special Needs Scholarship Program offered through the Ohio Department of Education.