Special Education Placement Decisions – The Least Restrictive Environment:
When determining your child’s special education placement, the clear intent of IDEA is that children should remain in the regular classroom whenever possible.
In determining your child’s special education placement, IDEA §300.114(b) General LRE requirements states: “(b) Each public agency shall ensure— (1) That to the maximum extent appropriate, children with disabilities” —”are educated with children who are nondisabled; and (2) That special classes, separate schooling or other removal of children with disabilities from the regular educational environment occurs only if the nature or severity of the disability is such that education in regular classes with the use of supplementary aids and services cannot be achieved satisfactorily.”
IDEA Appendix A, Question #1 about special education placement requires that:
“(1) each child with a disability be educated with nondisabled children to the maximum extent appropriate (§300.550(b)(1));
(2) each child with a disability be removed from the regular educational environment only when the nature or severity of the child’s disability is such that education in regular classes with the use of supplementary aids and services cannot be achieved satisfactorily (§300.550(b)(1)); and
(3) to the maximum extent appropriate to the child’s needs, each child with a disability participates with nondisabled children in nonacademic and extracurricular services and activities (§300.553).
IDEA Appendix A, Question #39 “If the child can appropriately function in the regular classroom with appropriate behavioral supports, strategies or interventions, placement in a more restrictive environment would be inconsistent with the least restrictive environment provisions of the IDEA.“
IDEA regulations §300.552 also state, “Unless the IEP of a child with a disability requires some other arrangement, the child is educated in the school that he or she would attend if nondisabled; In selecting the LRE, consideration is given to any potential harmful effect on the child or on the quality of services that he or she needs; and A child with a disability is not removed from education in age-appropriate regular classrooms solely because of needed modifications in the general curriculum.“
Special Education Placement Quiz Question
Should a student be given a special education placement outside of his neighborhood school?
Answer: Special education placement depends upon the child’s individual needs. The child may or may not be placed outside of his neighborhood school.