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How IDEA Affects Education

Carly Stockert
Sandi Steinhoff-Muller
SPED 100
Dakota State University

This paper is going to be explaining on how the Individuals with
Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) has changed education. This paper is going
to explain about how IDEA has grown through the years and has helped
students to be able to go to school no matter with Zero Reject, Least
Restrictive Environment (LRE), and Shared Decision Making. Children and
parents are helped out by the law with Nondiscriminatory Identification and
Evaluation and Due Process. This paper explains how education is free to
students because of Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) and this right
will never be taken away.

How IDEA Affects Education

If you dont stand for something you will fall for anything(Quotes) is a
quote from Malcolm X that shows the dedication and effort that he put forward in his
efforts to make Special Education the way that it is today. There have been many laws in the

How IDEA Affects Education

past that were put into action to protect the rights of people with disabilities. In 1975 there was a
law passed that guaranteed rights to students with disabilities. At the time that it was passed it
was called All Handicapped Childrens Act (AHCA). AHCA has been revised and renamed many
times and the last revision took place in 2004. The name of it today is Individuals with
Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and IDEA is a federal law aimed towards special education.
All of these changes have been for the children and to help them out the best that a teacher can
do. This has been the biggest and best change that education has had towards special education.
There are many changes that IDEA has brought to the education world and one is the parent to
teacher relationship. The teachers are a lot more open with the parents and they grow more of a
relationship than in the past. This also leads to a stronger relationship between the student and
teacher because of the trust that the teacher has to the students parent. IDEA has had a great
impact on children and families throughout these last few years.
The six main principles have major effects in IDEA and they each have their own role in
the society. With Zero Reject, it applies regardless of the nature or severity of the disability. The
requirement to provide special education to all students with disabilities is absolute between the
ages of 3 and 21. (Educational Issues) The next principle of IDEA is LRE LRE and that says that
students with disabilities are to be educated in the general education classroom to the most of
their ability. This gives students with disabilities a chance to be able to be with other students and
that then allows them to feel like they are fitting in as much as one can. The next part in IDEA
is Shared Decision Making and that is when schools have to get parental consent to be able to
provide a child with special education help. (AHCA) This is always the way that it works unless
it is shown that the school has tried to contact a parent to get this help, and if it is really needed,
then the help will be done without the parents say. This allows teachers to be more in touch with

How IDEA Affects Education

the parents and lets them be sure that they are able to be comfortable with each other to be able
to talk about any issue needing confrontation.
Being helped out by the law has always helped the parents and children get through
anything that comes their way. There are two major principles that prove full support for students
and parents to make sure that they are viewed equally. The first is Nondiscriminatory
Identification and Evaluation and it says that schools must use nonbiased methods of seeing if a
child has a disability. If the child does have a disability, these tests will see whether or not the
child needs to be put into the special education classroom or have and type of special education
care. Nondiscriminatory identification and Evaluation will help greatly because hopefully the
tests will get the student with disabilities into his or her least restrictive environment as soon as
possible in order to get to the needs of students. (Principles) Due Process is the next step in
making sure that the student is secure and in the right place they need to be in. This protects the
rights of the parents and students and makes sure that the parent knows what is going on at all
points in time in their childs life and what is said and done before it is actually done. These laws
and principles have been put here for the students and parents so that the students can have the
maximum growth in school and knowledge to the best of their ability.
As a great man once said Without education, you are not going anywhere in this world.
(Quotes) and he is the man that has followed his own words up and has made it possible for all
children to be educated, no matter how much money they own, or what race or which education
background they have. (AHCA) Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) lets children with
any type of disability are able to be taught in a public school with no expense to the childs
parents. (South Dakota) This is when an individualized education program (IEP) is made so that
a childs individual goals can be met. The teacher starts this off with observations and then

How IDEA Affects Education

slowly gathers enough data together to present it and make sure that the student gets the
appropriate education that he or she needs.
IDEA is something that has changed education greatly over the last years and is
something that will help students out for the rest of their lives. With IDEA it is now easier to
communicate with parents, put children with disabilities into special education quicker and also
make sure that children with special needs are put into their correct placements, the first time.
With this, the roles of the educators have changed because they are now more involved in their
students parents lives and also more into their students lives. IDEA has impacted many lives
since it has grown into what it is today and shows students and parents that there is something
out there for all children. This has given the opportunity for any child to get the education that
they deserve and now that this is in place, there is no reason why all cannot be educated to their
best potential. Individuals with Disabilities Education Act are the best thing that has happened to

How IDEA Affects Education

Work Cited
AHCA (2007) Special Education Legislation: A Synopsis of Federal and State Policies.
Retrieved November, 25, 2011, from

Educational Issues. (2008). Individuals with Disabilities Act. Retrieved November 24, 2011,
from National Resource Center on ADHD:
Principles of IDEA. (2005). Learning Disabilities Association. Retrieved November 25, 2011,
Quotes. (2001). Malcolm X Quotes. Retrieved November 23, 2011, from Brainy Quotes:
South Dakota Department of Education. (2011, July). South Dakota Parental Rights and
Procedural Safeguards. Retrieved November 23, 2011, from SDDOE: