Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) law requires public schools to make available to all eligible children with disabilities a “free appropriate public education” (also known as FAPE) in the least restrictive environment (LRE) appropriate to their individual needs. IDEA requires public school systems to develop appropriate Individualized Education Programs (IEP’s) to provide FAPE / LRE for each child. The specific special education and related services outlined in each IEP reflect the individualized needs of each student. IDEA also mandates that procedural safeguards are followed in the development of the IEP. Each student’s IEP must be developed by a team of knowledgeable persons inclusive of family members and the student with a disability (when appropriate) and must be reviewed annually.