Individuals With Disabilities Education Act


Individuals with Disabilities Education Act or IDEA, is a federal law of the United States. It was specially formulated for the children who have some form of disability. It ensures that a child with disability gets free and appropriate type of education. It stipulates that the child gets education in an environment which is least restrictive. It also directs that the public schools provide for all the necessary aids and equipments required for a disabled child. Also they should provide for accommodation for a disabled child.

Now, there are also certain criteria for a child to be regarded as disabled. IDEA, characterizes child as a disabled only if the child is suffering from some sort of mental retardation. This could be visual, speech, or a hearing impairment. Examples include autism, brain injury, and learning disabilities. Appropriate medical examination is done to further confirm whether a child is disabled or not before allowing him to avail of the special allowances.

In this definition, by Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, certain terms need to be defined more appropriately to have a clear understanding of the Act.

The first term, we are going to discuss is the “free” appropriate public education. This means that a disabled child should not be deprived of the necessary preschool, elementary, and secondary school education. The parents should be relieved of the pressure of paying the fees. Public schools are entrusted with the responsibility of keeping track of whether the disabled children within a district are going to school or not.

The second term, we are going to discuss, is least-restrictive environment. This stipulates that, as far as possible, the child should be included in a regular school but there are certain types of impairments which do not allow the child to be included in a school.