The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) was enacted in 1975 to ensure that all children with disabilities had access to a free and appropriate public education. The 2004 reauthorization of IDEA was intended to improve the educational outcomes of students with disabilities by strengthening the requirements for Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) and providing increased funding for special education services. The reauthorization also included provisions to increase parental involvement in the IEP process, improve the quality of special education teachers, and expand the use of technology in the classroom. Additionally, the reauthorization clarified the responsibilities of states and local education agencies in providing services to students with disabilities. The 2004 reauthorization of IDEA has been credited with helping to improve the educational outcomes of students with disabilities and ensuring that they have access to the same educational opportunities as their peers.

IDEA 2004

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Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004
Great Seal of the United States
Other short titles IDEA 2004
long title An act to reauthorize the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and for other purposes.
enacted by The 108th United States Congress
Effective July 1, 2005 and others
quotes
public law Pub. I. 108–446 (text) (PDF)
general statutes 118 State. 2647
legislative history
  • introduced in the Chamber as HR 1350 in mike castle on March 19, 2003
  • Committee consideration in Homeschooling and the workforce
  • passed by the house on April 30, 2003 (251–171, instead of S. 1248)
  • Approved in the Senate on May 13, 2004 (95–3)
  • Reported by the conference joint committee on November 17, 2004; approved by the Chamber on November 19, 2004 (397–3) and at Senate on November 19, 2004 (unanimous consent)
  • Signed in law by the president George W. Bush on December 3, 2004

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004 (IDEA 2004) it is a U.S law that demands equity, responsibility and excellence in Education for children with deficiency. As of 2018, approximately seven million students enrolled in US schools received special education services because of a disability.

Signed in law by President George W. Bush on December 3, 2004. Became effective July 1, 2005, with the exception of elements relating to “highly qualified teacher”. he authorizes formula subsidies to states, as well as discretionary grants for research, technology, and training. The last revision of IDEA took effect in October 2006.

IDEA 1997 vs. IDEA 2004

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Since it was signed into law, the Education for All Children with Disabilities Act (EHA) of 1975 has gone through several revisions. It was initially created to ensure that all children receive a free and appropriate public education (FAPE). Updates are made approximately every five years. The changes were authorized in 2004 under the new name of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEA). In 2006, additional changes were made to IDEA when the final regulations were released. They required schools to use research-based interventions in the process of assisting students with learning difficulties or in determining eligibility for special education. Many schools have implemented Response to Intervention (RTI) as a method of meeting the new requirements established by IDEA 2004.

Changes to the IEP Process (Individualized Educational Plan)

  1. IEP Contents -These cover annual goals, short-term goals, educational progress, special education and related services, alternative accommodations and assessments, and transitions.
  2. IEP Meeting Attendance – An IEP team member may be excused if the team member’s service is not discussed at the meeting. This must be approved by the school and parents.
  3. IEPs by agreement
  4. Review and review of IEPs
  5. Transition – Clarifies that transition services must begin at age 16 and must include a list of inter-agency responsibilities with necessary resources
  6. Alternative means of participating in meetings.

Changes in due process

Due process changes include the following: Procedural Safeguards Notice only needs to be distributed once a year, parents have two years to exercise due process rights, changes to due process complaint reporting procedure, parents must pass for a mandatory resolution session before due process, liability for attorney fees, and requirements of hearing officers.

Changes in Student Discipline

1. Adds new authority for school officials to determine discipline on a case-by-case basis

2. New standards for manifestation determinations where the burden of proof has shifted to the parent and must prove that the behavior was “caused or had a direct and substantial relationship to the child’s disability” or was “a direct result of the LEA’s failure to implement the IEP.”

3. Adds a new default for special circumstances (Drugs, Weapons, Severe Bodily Injury)

Resources

  • IDEA Partnership (External Source): The IDEA Partnership reflects the collaborative work of more than 50 national organizations, technical assistance providers, and state and local level organizations and agencies. Together with OSEP, Partner Organizations form a community with the potential to transform the way we work and improve outcomes for students and youth with disabilities. Dedicated to improving outcomes for students and youth with disabilities through shared work and learning.
  • Conference report on HR 1350, “Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004” (external source)
  • Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA): Analysis of the Changes Made by PL 108-446, Congressional Research Service Analysis of the New IDEA Act – January 5, 2005 (PDF, external source): This report details the changes made by PL 108-446 covering all parts of IDEA but focusing on Part B, which authorizes allowances for children with disabilities ages three to twenty-one and contains important provisions on the special education framework and related services and the procedural guarantees that guarantee the provision of an adequate and free public service Education (FAPE) for children with disabilities.
  • National Association of State Directors of Special Education (NASDSE) (external source): NASDSE offers a 200-page side-by-side that compares the current law with the amended law signed by President Bush on December 3. Individual copies are $15 each; Bulk orders of 100 copies or more receive a 15% discount. To order your copy, send a check or purchase order to NASDSE, 1800 Diagonal Road., Suite 320, Alexandria, VA 22314, Attention: C. Burgman. The document is not available in electronic format.
  • Council on Exceptional Children (CEC) (external source): Latest information on the 2004 IDEA reauthorization, including summary and analysis of the new IDEA, press releases about the bill, and a link to the bill itself.
  • Highly Qualified Teachers Improving Teacher Quality, State Grants, ESEA Title II, Part A Non-Regulatory Guidance, August 3, 2005 (External Source): This Guide also includes questions about highly qualified teacher flexibility policies, revisions and answer expansions to various issues, revision of the deadline for qualifying paraprofessionals, and new information on highly qualified special education teachers resulting from the reauthorization of IDEA. This Guidance is under review and will be released shortly by the ED.

See too

References


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