The special education climate is significantly affected by legislative actions. The legislation aims to give the best care and services students with disabilities without adding the cost of services to the parent. This study focuses on three legislative actions by the government to improve the quality of education offered to students with special needs. The legislation also aims to give the students a better learning environment. The Child find/zero reject law requires educators such as school district administrators and teachers to look for students with special needs in their schools. The administrators then place the identified students in special education programs in the schools or other appropriate schools. Also, the free proper public education (FAPE) concept requires the schools to give students with special needs an appropriate education at no cost. The paper also discusses the least restrictive environment principle. In this principle, the students with special needs are placed in general classrooms with their peers and receive the necessary support services from the teachers.
Keywords: legislative actions, special needs, programs.
Legislative Actions Photo and Synapsis
Special education teachers can adapt and work in different learning environments. However, the special education climate is significantly affected by legal actions directed towards the education sector or specifically addressing special education. This paper discusses three legislative actions of child find and zero reject law, free appropriate public education and the least restrictive environment principle that influence the special education environment.
Child find/zero reject law.
Figure 1: School district officials seeking a student with a disability
The child find/zero reject law requires education official within school districts to beef up efforts in looking for students who need special attention among their school populations. After identifying the students with disabilities, the officials then place them in special education institutions depending on the type of disability. The efforts have led to more students with special needs receiving the necessary education in schools specially designed for them.
Free appropriate public education
Figure 2: Free appropriate public education
Although all students in the US have a right to free education, those with special needs are entitled to free proper public education(FAPE). FAPE specific services of assessment of their needs, instruction by trained special educators and transportation services where necessary. However, these services are provided to the student at no cost to the parent. Therefore, a free appropriate public education increases the opportunities to the student as well as reducing the burden of expenses to the parent. Besides, FAPEensures that the student gets adequate progress in the general curriculum of education for the district.
Least restrictive environment
Figure 3: Least restrictive environment inclusive of peers
The least restrictive environment is a legal principle that requires students with special needs to be educated together with peers and other students with similar needs. However, special needs students in general classrooms receive support services to meet their needs. However, restrictive approaches may be applied in instances where the requirements are not met in a public classroom setting.The least restrictive environment allows the needs of a student with a disability to be met sufficiently.
In conclusion, the special needs education climate is influenced by the child find, and zero reject law, free appropriate public education and the least restrictive environment principle. These legislative actions improve the education services offered by special needs institutions and general schools to the students with special needs.
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