Students with disabilities

The following chart from Lanier Technical College explains the differences in services for students with disabilities at the high school and college level.

  High School College
Applicable Laws

IDEA 2004 mandates eligible students shall receive free appropriate public education in the least restrictive environment.

Some students may also receive accommodations under Section 504 and 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

Americans with Disabilities Act 1990 (ADA), ADA Amendments Act of 2008 (ADAAA) and Section 504 and 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

"No otherwise qualified individual with a disability shall, solely by reason of such disability, be excluded from participation in or be denied the benefits of the services, programs, or activities of a public entity, or be subjected to discrimination by any such entity."

Attendance Parents are required to make sure child attends school to age 16. Appropriate public education is a right. Parents are under no legal mandate to send child to college at any age. Postsecondary education is not a right - students must meet certain admission criteria.
Payment Public education is free to the family, paid by local and state taxes. Students are responsible for applying for financial aid, scholarships or arranging other types of payment. Eligibility for funding assistance may require students to attend full-time.
Identification of Needs School districts must identify and provide appropriate special education supports and services to eligible students. Students must self-identify. Colleges have no legal responsibility to identify students with disabilities or involve parents in decision-making.
Guardianship Parent or some other adult is considered the student's guardian. Student is considered his/her own legal guardian unless there is a court order to the contrary.
IEP/Accommodations Parents and children are collaborative team members involved in the decision process of determining eligibility, IEP, placement, supports, fundamental accommodations, and services. The IEP team meets regularly No fundamental modifications are required - only accommodations. Students must identify needs and request services. No IEP exists and is not considered sufficient documentation.
Evaluations School District may provide and fund evaluations. Students are responsible to obtain and pay for own evaluations, and to provide those to Disability Services.
Responsibility Students do homework. Parents, teachers, counselors, therapists, classroom aids, administrators and many others support students and encourage them to get their class assignments and homework completed. Students study. Students are responsible for seeking assistance from the Disability Services Office. Professors expect students to independently read, save, and consult the course syllabus (outline) throughout the course. The syllabus informs the student exactly what is expected of him/her, when it is due, and how it will be graded.
Personal Services Provision of personal services for medical and physical disabilities are required (i.e., Personal Care Attendant). Provision of personal services are not required - however, the Disability Services Office may assist the student in advertising for such services.
Parental Rights Parents may access student records. Parents should expect periodic progress reports and can request a conference at any time. Parents have no access to student records without written consent of their child. Parents should not expect college staff to provide reports on student progress or attendance. Student may sign release forms to allow staff to discuss personal information with whomever he/she chooses.
Parental Role Parents may advocate for their child. The student self-advocates. Parents are mentors.
School Calendar School year generally runs September to June with holiday breaks in spring and winter. Summer sessions may be for remediation or enrichment. School year may be divided into 2 semesters: from September to December and from January to May, and may include shorten summer or intercessions for full course credit.
Teacher Role Students meet daily with teachers, and ask questions during class. Classes meet less frequently, students must make arrangements to meet with teachers outside of class.
Scheduling Courses Counselors advise, fill in, and submit students’ course schedules. The school determines when the student will take the course. When accepted and tuition has been paid, students self- select courses, manage course conflicts, determine if they have prerequisites or alternates if the classes are closed. Students seek help from academic advisor.

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