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Jodi: Can 504 plans write accommodations that state “at teachers’ discretion”?

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12/25/2017 4:47 pm

My 504 says, “upon student request,” if the student is able to self advocate, the above phrase might be more helpful.

Jill G
12/20/2015 7:30 pm

Jodi –

I would suppose that depends. There is no legal prohibition for including such a phrase on a 504 Plan. The “okay-ness” of including the phrase would depend on its purpose.

The 504 Plan should document the services, supports, and accommodations that the student needs to receive a free appropriate public education. It’s possible that a student needs some supports only some of the time, and it would be appropriate for the teacher to determine when those times are. For those times, I see it as perfectly okay to include such a phrase.

Jill G
12/20/2015 7:30 pm

I would suggest that you consider (and ask the 504 Team to consider) what the purpose of including the phrase is. Is it included to benefit the student, or is it included for the teacher’s convenience? If it’s the former, it might be helpful to carefully define the circumstances when the student would and would not need the support (to give the teacher some guidance).

If it’s the latter, the phrase simply shouldn’t be included. And perhaps the Team should have a discussion regarding the purpose of the 504 Plan and the legal obligation for teachers to follow it.