My 6 year old daughter had her 3 year reevaluation. She has Childhood Apraxia of Speech and fine motor difficulty. She is doing well academically.
At the IEP meeting, one month ago, it was decided that she no longer qualifies for an IEP. The school suggested a 504 plan and said they would contact us for a meeting.
What is the timeline for a 504 Plan?
The federal regulations do not mandate a timeline for Section 504 meetings or for implementation of a plan. Your school district may have developed specific procedures for implementing a 504 plan, but I doubt it.
Since the federal regulations for Section 504 do not require parent participation in the process, the school may have already had the meeting – or not.
The school does not have to invite you to the meeting to develop a 504 plan. However, the school must notify you that the plan was developed. If you have not heard anything from the school, it is time to find out what, if anything, they have done.
Parent Participation in the IEP Process
You said “it was decided that she no longer qualified for an IEP.” Were you part of that decision?
IDEA 2004 lists parents first as members of the IEP team. You should have definite input at the meeting when the IEP team made the decision about eligibility.
Key Differences in IDEA and Section 504
It is important to be aware of the difference between an IEP and a Section 504 plan.
IDEA provides more specialized services and safeguards for you and your child. You will find information about the key differences in these articles.
More information and articles are on this page – Discrimination: Section 504 and ADA.
Grades and Eligibility
Your daughter is doing well academically. Great! However, IDEA does not mention grades as a criteria for special education eligibility.
- Has your daughter met all her IEP goals?
- Does she no longer have speech problems that require specially designed instruction to meet her unique needs?
- Does she no longer have any fine motor needs?
- How was your daughter’s progress determined?
- Did the IEP team, including the parents, review objective test data?
The school is required to do a comprehensive evaluation (and assess all areas of suspected disability) before they can terminate your daughter’s eligibility from special ed.
- Did the 3 year reevaluation provide this data in all areas?
It may be that your daughter no longer needs an IEP and is ready to exit special education.
Caution: Think carefully about terminating your child’s eligibility until you are convinced that she is functioning well and can continue to progress.
At her age, the next few years are critical for reading, writing, and communication skills.