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Wrightslaw: Special Education Law, 2nd Ed.

Wrightslaw: Special Education Law, 2nd Ed. (ISBN: 978-1-892320-16-2, 456 pages, 8 1/2" x 11", perfect bound) by Peter W.D. Wright and Pamela Darr Wright is available as a printed book and in both Kindle and adobe.pdf downloadable formats.

IDEA 2004, a revision to the earlier IDEA 97, became law in 2004 and begins in the United States Code at 20 U.S.C. § 1400. In 2006, the U.S. Department of Education issued the special education regulations for IDEA 2004, published in 34 CFR Part 300.

The second edition of our law book contains the full text of the IDEA 2004 statute (Chapter 5) and its regulations (Chapter 6). The book was published in 2006, immediately after the regulations were issued.

The book also contains portions of other related laws, specifically Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB), the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, and the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act.

The book is almost 20 years old. Since its publication, there have been some revisions to the above statutes and their regulations. Some changes were minor and of a housekeeping nature, and others were more substantive. Below are the most significant changes in Chapter 5, IDEA 2004, and its regulations in Chapter 6.

Chapter 5, which contains the full text of IDEA 2004, has revisions beginning at 20 U.S.C. § 1401(3)(A)(i), on page 44, which defines a "child with a disability." The opening part includes the words with "mental retardation." Pursuant to "Rosa's Law" passed in 2010, "mental retardation" was changed to "intellectual disabilities." That change was also made in the regulations in Chapter 6 at 34 CFR § 300.8(a)(1) and § 300.8(c)(6), pages 193 + 194, and many other federal statutes and regulations unrelated to disabilities or education.

Continuing in Chapter 5 and Chapter 6, deletions were made in the "Definitions" pursuant to the repeal of NCLB by Congress. For background, the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA) is the federal law enacted to help schools educate disadvantaged children. When the ESEA was reauthorized in 2001, it was named "No Child Left Behind" (NCLB).

In 2015, Congress repealed NCLB and replaced it with the "Every Student Succeeds Act" (ESSA) and deleted the requirements related to "core academic subjects" and "highly qualified" and revised "Limited English Proficient."

In Chapters 5 and 6, the NCLB term core academic subjects was deleted from the statute and the regulations. See 20 U.S.C. § 1401(4) on page 50 and 34 CFR § 300.10 on page 195.

In Chapters 5 and 6, the definition of a "highly qualified" special education teacher was also deleted from the statute and the regulations. See 20 U.S.C. § 1401(10) on page 51 and 34 CFR § 300.18 on page 196.

In Chapters 5 and 6, the definition of a "Limited English Proficient" was revised to incorporate the term "English learner" in ESEA. See 20 U.S.C. § 1401(18) on page 53 and 34 CFR § 300.27 on page 198.

In Chapter 6, the definition of "Scientifically based research" at 34 CFR § 300.35, on page 202 was removed after ESSA replaced NCLB.

Chapter 8, No Child Left Behind, beginning at page 299, is no longer good law. As noted above, it was replaced with ESEA in 2015.

To check the current text of a specific statute or regulation, you may use the "Legal Information Institute" website. For example, to look at the IEP statute at 20 U.S.C. § 1414(d), click on the link below:

and scroll down to subsection (d).

To check the IEP regulations beginning at: 34 CFR § 300.320, click on the link below:

For other statutes in Title 20, such as 1415, with the portion of the above URL "/uscode/text/20/1414", replace the 1414 with 1415. For the CFR, replace the "320" with the specific regulation, such as the next one, 321.

Wrightslaw: Special Education Law, 3rd Ed. is scheduled to be released in the late fall of 2022 or early in 2023. It incorporates the above changes to IDEA and also includes relevant text from both the statute and regulations of Section 504 and also the Americans with Disabilities Act.

It also contains numerous references to current case law including the two unanimous rulings from the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS). The book will be published in a print version and adobe.pdf. The adobe.pdf version includes numerous hyperlinks to references within and outside the book on the internet.



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