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Rebecca:  Can a student receive related services (speech, OT, PT) in a 504 plan or just in an IEP?

  1. What if a district refuses to give paraprofessional help to a student with ADHD under a 504 plan even though the child is academically below his peers?

    • A 504 plan is about accommodations to level the playing field. If this child requires direct instruction, then they should be considered for an IEP. A paraprofessional seems to be more than a reasonable accommodation offered through a 504 plan.

  2. Related services can be offered under Section 504, but not ALL related services. Section 504 is to level the playing field for access to FAPE; however, there are certain services that a district can regulate its offerings under SpEd, Section 504 or both. For OT/PT, we only offer it on a consult basis and not the actual service. The actual service is given under SpEd.

    When accommodations and services become more SPECIALLY designed, they often are things that will be given under Special Education.

  3. Wow this is New information to me as someone who provided those “related services” but does make total sense. Thank you for sharing this information.

  4. My understanding is that any child can have services if needed whether they have an IEP or not. However, the 504 in not the platform to add services. Those services come form an outside source. We cannot require a parent/caregiver to provide those services for their child.

  5. When, then, should speech/language related services be provided under a 504 and when under an IEP? Particularly in states where CST involvement is mandated for all language evaluations?

  6. Rebecca: Yes, a student can receive related services via a 504 plan.
    Section 504 of the Rehab Act requires schools to provide eligible students with disabilities a free appropriate public education. The Act defines “appropriate education” as “… the provision of regular or special education and *related aids and services* that are designed to meet individual educational needs of handicapped persons as adequately as the needs of nonhandicapped persons are met…”
    Check out this FAQ from OCR for more info:

  7. JG is right! However, you will find many, many people who don’t realize this, and will claim to be extremely knowledgeable, and will tell you that related services can only be given as part of an IEP. Stand firm — they are mistaken!

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