Two Programs on January 26 & 27
Presenter: Perry A. Zirkel, Lehigh University Professor Emeritus of Education & Law
Audience: General and Special Education Teachers and Administrators, School Counselors, and Student Support Services Professionals
Program One: The Basics
This program, intended for but not limited to novice 504 coordinators, focuses on the basic building blocks of an effective school program in relation to Section 504 and its sister statute, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). It will cover the following topics:
- What are the key differences between Section 504, the ADA, and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)?
- What is the required grievance procedure?
- What are the latest eligibility standards?
- What are the reasons for avoiding under- or over-identification?
- What are the required elements of the procedural safeguards notice?
- What are the practical recommendations for 504 plans?
- What are the alternative avenues for enforcement?
- What are the key issues for 504-only students under COVID-19?
This session will also include illustrative forms, recommended procedures, and ample opportunity for Q-and-A.
Program Two: The Nuances
This program, intended for but not limited to experienced 504 coordinators, focuses on addressing the latest, more nuanced legal issues under Section 504 and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA): (1) specific to students who are not also covered by the IDEA (i.e., "504-only") and (2) extending to students also covered by the IDEA (i.e., "double-covered").
In the "504-only" context, this program covers:
- Does Child Find apply under Section 504?
- What revisions do the Department of Justice’s September 2016 regulations make to the Section 504 eligibility standard?
- What is the current operational meaning of "substantial" limitation, including, for example, its application to students with concussions?
- Are some students only technically eligible under Section 504?
- Are students entitled to special education as part of a 504 plan?
- How can a 504 coordinator say "No" in a way that is both legally and educationally effective to the parents of the student who is not eligible?
- Post-pandemic, are students on 504 plans entitled to compensatory education services upon resumption of full in-person learning?
In the "double-covered" context:
- What are the current differences between the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) and the courts in applying Section 504/ADA?
- Does compliance with IDEA requirements automatically fulfill the corresponding requirements under Section 504/ADA?
- Are parents required to "exhaust" the step of a due process hearing under (a) the IDEA or (b) Section 504 before filing suit in court?
- What has been the trend in judicial rulings for claims specific to (a) service animals, (b) bullying, (c) CART, and (d) retaliation?
- Are individual school employees, such as teachers and Section 504 coordinators, subject to liability under Section 504/ADA?
- What is the prevailing standard for district liability under Section 504/ADA?
- Are students under IEPs entitled to rights under Section 504 beyond those provided under the IDEA?