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Principles of IDEA #sped

Understanding Article 7 helps parent(s), advocates, school personnel, and students work together more effectively. When positive relationships are established between a parent(s) and the school, students with disabilities receive a better education and leave school better prepared to succeed as adults.

Article 7 is part of the Indiana Administrative Code (IAC) that contains Indiana’s special education rules. These rules have been adopted by the State Board of Education (SBE) in order to implement the requirements of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act as amended in 2004, commonly known as IDEA ‘04.

The six principles of IDEA ’04: 
• Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE), 
• Appropriate educational evaluation, 
• Individualized Education Program (IEP), 
• Least Restrictive Environment (LRE), 
• Procedural safeguards (sometimes referred to as the Notice of Parent Rights or NOPS), and 
• Parent(s) participation in decisions.

IDEA ‘04 requires public schools to provide students with disabilities with a FAPE in the LRE and requires the Indiana Department of Education (IDOE) to have rules, policies, and procedures to ensure that the federal rules are fulfilled. Article 7 describes the school’s responsibility to provide a FAPE to a student with a disability, including evaluating the student, working with the parent(s) as part of the case conference committee (CCC), implementing the student’s individualized education program (IEP), and ensuring that procedural safeguards are provided. It also describes parental rights and responsibilities of the parent(s) as a participant in identifying the student’s needs and the special education and related services that the public school will provide to meet those needs. There are 16 rules in Article 7 that address definitions, programs and personnel, disability categories and eligibility, evaluations, CCC meetings, IEPs, related services, services to students in nonpublic schools, discipline, child count, and funding for extraordinary educational services.

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