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Old 09-15-2007, 09:18 PM   #1
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Default Homeschooling with a 504

We are in the process of deciding if we should homeschool our children at least for this year.

Our twins have difficulty with writing-the fine motor skills part, not the cognative part, and could potentially qualify for a 504, which is kind of like an IEP, but relates more to their physical abilities.

As we are in the process of considering what is best for them, we are pursuing both homeschooling and continuing at the public school working toward the 504s.

But if they get the 504 will that create more red tape or paperwork for us to homeschool them?

I hope I am being clear.
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Old 09-16-2007, 11:14 AM   #2
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I have two children on 504s in public school. Originally I had them on IEPs. My recommendation to you is to push for IEPs if your children are not at the high school level - you get a lot more support with an IEP and an aid in the classroom... if you children are highschool age, place them on a 504 if they really do not need all the support an IEP offers - this way colleges will work with you - they take 504s not IEPs...

As for homeschooling - I believe since you are a private institution,the government cannot give you are hard time about homeschooling your children...

there is a great legal organization for homeschooling parents with questions like these:
Homeschooling Legal Defense Association

Here's also a great article for homeschooling with special needs information:
Homeschool.com

Hope this helps... I choose public schooling because I work full time... but if I could stay home, I would choosing homeschooling...
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Old 09-16-2007, 11:22 AM   #3
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A 504 is tied to the Americans with disabilities act ADA. A 504 is to ensure that your child is given the appropriate accommodations for their disability. Accommodations under 504 could be extended time on tests, access to a computer to complete polished written work, like essays. It can be used for health issues like diabetes, to ensure (legally) that a child has access to his/her glucometer, snacks at an appropriate time etc. I don't think that a 504 would have any bearing on home schooling. A 504 provides legal protection, which I don't think you could apply to yourself as a home school teacher.
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Old 09-16-2007, 11:28 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by stampaloooza View Post
this way colleges will work with you - they take 504s not IEPs...
Off topic, but...
Are you absolutely certain about this? I tend to think that colleges do take IEPs. I'll double check with our staffing specialist tomorrow, but we've always encouraged students and their parents to keep IEPs active in high school, even if accommodations weren't being used because if they graduated with an active IEP then the college had to honor it.

Hi, Rainy!
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Old 09-16-2007, 11:38 AM   #5
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Ok, here is the deal --

A "504" accommodation plan is from Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act (not the Americans with Disability Act, buy easy to confuse). You may home school your kids regardless of whether your children are on a 504 plan or an IEP, or nothing at all.

A 504 accommodation would be relevant in college, because almost every college receives federal funds (student loans). A 504 plan is also known as a reasonable accommodation. Your child is entitled to one if he or she has a disability that affects his or her ability to go to school or function in school because every local school district gets federal funds. Federal funds = 504 plan.

My son had a 504 accommodation in elementary school because of his incredibly bad fine motor skills. However, because he was at or above grade level, he did not qualify for an IEP. I'm not saying this will always be the case, but that is what happened with my son. His 504 accommodation was a portable keypad instead of having to use a pencil and paper to write. He no longer has a 504 plan because he is in a private school that doesn't accept federal funds. No federal funds = no 504 plan!

An IEP is NOT applicable in college because an IEP is tied to the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) -- a federal grant program that goes to States and then, local school districts. Colleges do not receive IDEA funds, thus no IEP. No IDEA funds = No IEP (every state and local school district gets IDEA monies).

I hope this helps clarify the various laws!
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Old 09-16-2007, 11:47 AM   #6
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I know a lot people who homeschool with 504's due to extreme allergies. There is a board that might be helpful to you...

www.peanutallergy.com

go to the schools forum

If you posted what you posted here you would be able to get responses from people who do homeschool with a 504

good luck
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Old 09-16-2007, 12:10 PM   #7
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An IEP is NOT applicable in college because an IEP is tied to the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) -- a federal grant program that goes to States and then, local school districts. Colleges do not receive IDEA funds, thus no IEP. No IDEA funds = No IEP (every state and local school district gets IDEA monies).
Ok, so is an IEP changed to a 504 when they go to college?

Students who have diagnosed learning disabilities under an IEP must surely still receive accommodations at the college level. I've searched the local JC and U college websites and don't see definitive answers.
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Old 09-16-2007, 12:19 PM   #8
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Ok, so is an IEP changed to a 504 when they go to college?

Students who have diagnosed learning disabilities under an IEP must surely still receive accommodations at the college level. I've searched the local JC and U college websites and don't see definitive answers.
Yes, but it doesn't happen automatically. You have to ask and submit whatever documentation the college asks for. My friend's son had an IEP for serious emotional issues and now has a 504 reasonable accommodation in college. If the college receives federal funds, it must comply with this law. I think Bob Jones University and Grove City College do not receive federal funds. There are probably a few others, but really almost every single one does.

Most colleges do not do a great job in this area, so students and parents should make sure to pursue it.
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Old 09-16-2007, 12:48 PM   #9
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Ok, so is an IEP changed to a 504 when they go to college?

Students who have diagnosed learning disabilities under an IEP must surely still receive accommodations at the college level. I've searched the local JC and U college websites and don't see definitive answers.
I think as the disability progresses then it changes from an IEP to a 504.

For example when my daughter was in the second half of 2nd grade she was officially diagnosed with dyslexia. When she was tested she came back with a near genius IQ. However, her fine motor skills and other skills were lacking by quite a bit. She was not even reading at the kindergarten level.

Well, because of this she was placed in special education classes for reading and given an IEP. For half of the day she was not in her regular class. Funny part of it was that she was in the top level math class. Her math teacher didn't even realize that she had a learning disability until her special ed teacher approached him about the 2 minute timed tests that should not count against Mariah's grade because of her dyslexia.

Now, 2 years later she is tested again to see her improvement. Well, at the end of 4th grade she has gained 7 reading levels. That's right. She is now reading ABOVE grade level. So, her IEP was cancelled. However, because she still has a diagnosed learning disability she was given a 504. Basically what it said was that if necessary she needed to be given additional time for tests, she is allowed to use textbooks on tape if she wants to, she gets to use a spell check, etc... Now, even though she is reading above grade level the writing portion for her is still extremely difficult. So, she tends to right short choppy sentences if forced to write paragraphs or stories in class. So, the teacher allows her to bring this type of work home to take the pressure off.

Now, Mariah doesn't use many of the accomodations that she is allowed. She usually finishes the tests in time but is the last one to do so. However, it is enough of a relief in her mind to know that she CAN take extra time...so she doesn't freeze up.

Mariah has now just started 5th grade and just turned 10 years old. She is the youngest in her class because of her birthday, but she is in the highest reading level and the highest math level. As a matter of fact, they are thinking about putting her in the Gifted and Talented class.

Though we don't use alot of the accomodations for the 504...sometimes it is enough to just know that it is there. When highschool starts, we may use more of the accomodations like the textbooks on tape. I guess we will have to see.

Anyway, sorry so long....just wanted you to know that the IEPs and 504s are a great way to make those with learning disabilities successful. Also, you should still be able to homeschool if your child has them.
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Old 09-16-2007, 02:23 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Christine P View Post
Off topic, but...
Are you absolutely certain about this? I tend to think that colleges do take IEPs. I'll double check with our staffing specialist tomorrow, but we've always encouraged students and their parents to keep IEPs active in high school, even if accommodations weren't being used because if they graduated with an active IEP then the college had to honor it.

Hi, Rainy!
I was told by my school district that most colleges take 504 plans but not IEP plans and that is why they wanted to switch my children... also my two children do not need as much help and support as they used to... so a 504 provides protection but not as heavy duty as an IEP in public schools.

Here's an article about 504's & colleges:
http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/sec504.index.htm

Also the 504 plan in high school is different than the 504 plan in college - the article above helps you understand this...

Here's information about IEP's:
http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/iep.index.htm

Here's an article for planning college with disabilities:
http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/college.index.htm

The 504 is under the American Disability Act where as the IEP is not. So that is why colleges are mandated to support the 504 and not the IEP.

My recommendation is to do your homework...wrightslaw can help you with this...

Also I found out that if I choose to homeschool, I would petition the school district for an IEP or a section 504. Once I am on one, I then have additional acommodations available to me. Some homeschooling parents choose to use public school to help with art, gym and music requirements as well as obtain books for schooling...

Hope this helps...
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Old 09-16-2007, 02:31 PM   #11
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Also, not every school district's decisions as to whether to grant an IEP or Section 504 are consistent. I had to move around alot to find the school district that would grant my children IEP's. My children have a vision disability that causes dyslexia/ADD type symptoms but from a state and federal law standpoint they were not disabled enough for an IEP.

So I did some research and contacted the Vision Counsel for America and they helped me change the laws in Illinois to allow for my children's vision disability...and I got my children on an IEP.

It was a lot of work and politics... but now my children are straight A students and confident. I shudder to think about what would of happened to them if I simply gave up...
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Old 09-16-2007, 02:52 PM   #12
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Ok, here is the deal --

My son had a 504 accommodation in elementary school because of his incredibly bad fine motor skills. However, because he was at or above grade level, he did not qualify for an IEP. I'm not saying this will always be the case, but that is what happened with my son. His 504 accommodation was a portable keypad instead of having to use a pencil and paper to write.

This sounds just like my twins. They didn't qualify for IEPs but may qualify for 504s. That way they could possibly take spelling tests orally or we could write their homework out etc.

We are getting Occupationals Therapy for them and the therapists think that with help they will be able to catch up and function normally. The therapy starts tomorrow.
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Old 09-16-2007, 02:54 PM   #13
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Hi, Rainy!

Hi Christine! If I were still in Okaloosa county I don't think we'd be thinking about homeschooling!
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Old 09-16-2007, 02:55 PM   #14
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I know a lot people who homeschool with 504's due to extreme allergies. There is a board that might be helpful to you...

www.peanutallergy.com

go to the schools forum

If you posted what you posted here you would be able to get responses from people who do homeschool with a 504

good luck
Thank you Sarah, I will do that.
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Old 09-16-2007, 03:01 PM   #15
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I think as the disability progresses then it changes from an IEP to a 504.

For example when my daughter was in the second half of 2nd grade she was officially diagnosed with dyslexia. When she was tested she came back with a near genius IQ. However, her fine motor skills and other skills were lacking by quite a bit. She was not even reading at the kindergarten level.

Well, because of this she was placed in special education classes for reading and given an IEP. For half of the day she was not in her regular class. Funny part of it was that she was in the top level math class. Her math teacher didn't even realize that she had a learning disability until her special ed teacher approached him about the 2 minute timed tests that should not count against Mariah's grade because of her dyslexia.

Now, 2 years later she is tested again to see her improvement. Well, at the end of 4th grade she has gained 7 reading levels. That's right. She is now reading ABOVE grade level. So, her IEP was cancelled. However, because she still has a diagnosed learning disability she was given a 504. Basically what it said was that if necessary she needed to be given additional time for tests, she is allowed to use textbooks on tape if she wants to, she gets to use a spell check, etc... Now, even though she is reading above grade level the writing portion for her is still extremely difficult. So, she tends to right short choppy sentences if forced to write paragraphs or stories in class. So, the teacher allows her to bring this type of work home to take the pressure off.

Now, Mariah doesn't use many of the accomodations that she is allowed. She usually finishes the tests in time but is the last one to do so. However, it is enough of a relief in her mind to know that she CAN take extra time...so she doesn't freeze up.

Mariah has now just started 5th grade and just turned 10 years old. She is the youngest in her class because of her birthday, but she is in the highest reading level and the highest math level. As a matter of fact, they are thinking about putting her in the Gifted and Talented class.

Though we don't use alot of the accomodations for the 504...sometimes it is enough to just know that it is there. When highschool starts, we may use more of the accomodations like the textbooks on tape. I guess we will have to see.

Anyway, sorry so long....just wanted you to know that the IEPs and 504s are a great way to make those with learning disabilities successful. Also, you should still be able to homeschool if your child has them.
Wow Jeanette, that is an inspiring story. Thank you for taking the time to share it.

One of my twins has dyslexia and disgraphia. The other one is hard to pinpoint what he has besides poor motor skills. So this is very encouraging. They also tested very bright.

I'm thinking if I homeschool them, I can help them catch up. We are a military family and only here for one year. I don't know where we will live next year.

But this seems like the perfect time to try homeschooling becuase if we don't like it we can go back to the public school where we move.
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Old 09-19-2007, 04:09 PM   #16
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There are only a few qualifiying diagnoses for an IEP...students who don't meet those, but need extra support due to a different diagnosis qualify for 504. There isn't a progression from one to another...and one doesn't change into the other. For an IEP, the student must have: traumatic brain injury, some type of physical issue (missing a limb/physical disablity, etc), blindness, deafness, mental retardation, and several more... ADD usually qualifies a student for a 504 plan unless there is documented medical reason and/or another issue that goes with it which would then qualify him/her for an IEP.
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Old 09-19-2007, 05:20 PM   #17
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There are only a few qualifiying diagnoses for an IEP...students who don't meet those, but need extra support due to a different diagnosis qualify for 504. There isn't a progression from one to another...and one doesn't change into the other. For an IEP, the student must have: traumatic brain injury, some type of physical issue (missing a limb/physical disablity, etc), blindness, deafness, mental retardation, and several more... ADD usually qualifies a student for a 504 plan unless there is documented medical reason and/or another issue that goes with it which would then qualify him/her for an IEP.
In my school district there is a battery of tests the child must take in order to qualify for an IEP. Also there are extenuating circumstances such as ADD or Medical Issues that would qualify as an IEP. In the world of Vision disabilities, the law is very vague and does not explain exactly what vision disabilities are covered. A section 504 will not provide my child books on tape but an IEP does. Also an IEP is taken more seriously by the teachers and does guarantee an aid in the classroom. A 504 does not guarantee an aid unless more than one 504 child requires an aid and there is budget appropriated for an aid.

Both my children were borderline in terms of vision disability meaning they were not blind, but both failed all the reading tests and had medical doctors recommendations for an IEP not a 504.

It is very important when deciding whether to put your child on an IEP or a 504 that you know the differences and which one gives your child the best support.

www.wrightslaw.com will help you with this. Also you need to go into these meetings prepared - so make alist of accomodations that you feel your child needs and ask for them.

My children and I have been through a lot, but again I highly recommend an IEP if you can get your child on one when you child is young.
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Old 09-20-2007, 01:46 PM   #18
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There are only a few qualifiying diagnoses for an IEP...students who don't meet those, but need extra support due to a different diagnosis qualify for 504. There isn't a progression from one to another...and one doesn't change into the other. For an IEP, the student must have: traumatic brain injury, some type of physical issue (missing a limb/physical disablity, etc), blindness, deafness, mental retardation, and several more... ADD usually qualifies a student for a 504 plan unless there is documented medical reason and/or another issue that goes with it which would then qualify him/her for an IEP.
I'm not sure who told you this. I don't think it is completely accurate.
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Old 09-20-2007, 03:16 PM   #19
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I'm not sure who told you this. I don't think it is completely accurate.
I was going to say the same thing. My DD has an extremely high IQ but has dyslexia and dysgraphia. She had an IEP and when she progressed in special ed classes to the point where she did not need additional out of class instruction anymore she "graduated" to a 504. That doesn't mean that some kids don't start out with a 504, but you don't need traumatic brain injury, etc... to qualify for an IEP.
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Old 09-20-2007, 06:46 PM   #20
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I was going to say the same thing. My DD has an extremely high IQ but has dyslexia and dysgraphia. She had an IEP and when she progressed in special ed classes to the point where she did not need additional out of class instruction anymore she "graduated" to a 504. That doesn't mean that some kids don't start out with a 504, but you don't need traumatic brain injury, etc... to qualify for an IEP.
I concur here. With the leave no child behind act, the IEP has to cover many more children and yes children can start off on an IEP plan and as they obtain better skills in the area of their disability, there could a switch to a 504.

I just want to make sure everyone reading this post does their homework before deciding on which plan to go after and also which plan to switch to.

That's why I am pointing everyone to www.wrightslaw.com. It truly is a valuable website that has very pointed information about both plans...

Hope this helps...
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Old 09-22-2007, 04:55 AM   #21
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What I was trying to say was there are several qualifying determiners for an IEP.
Visual Impairment
Speech and Language Impairment
Auditory Impairment
Deaf/Blind
Autism
Developmental Disabilities (mental retardation)
Multiple Disabilities
Orthopedic Impairment (Physical)
Specific Learning Disabilities
Emotional/Behavior Disorder
Traumatic Brain Injury
Multi-sensory Impairment
Serious Health Impairments
Yes, you have to go throught the whole battery of tests to get there...not just anyone can have an IEP. Through testing, student observation, etc... it is determined if the child is eligible for an IEP. That's how it is in my world as a Special Ed teacher....

4Biddles...your DD qualified for her IEP because of her specific learning disabilty. She's more the exeption than the rule in what I deal with. Most students with an IEP unfortunately have to stay with them. It's great that she was able to improve and move to a 504 with less assistance. But, if you look at the list of other qualifiers, many of them aren't things that students can easily overcome and go out on their own. Hope that clarifies what I was trying to say...but said too vague.
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Old 09-22-2007, 08:34 AM   #22
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BlueHenStamper, well said! And I have some good news for the residents of Highland Park, Illinois - we now have a PASK112 monthy meeting to address the needs of parents and students who are on Section 504s and IEPs... Also it seems this school district is more advanced than others meaning that they will put a student on an IEP even if they can be mainstreamed into the classroom... I am very blessed and lucky and the administrators are wonderful to work with and are very very patient. Maybe it would be good to keep this thread going and post here when new things happen in your communities surrounding IEP/Section 504s... for me when I started this whole journey and it is a journey... I had nothing to go on and had to learn as I went... If we could help other moms out there with questions on IEP/Section 504s or at least point them in the right direction, my what a blessing we can be...
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Old 09-22-2007, 08:37 AM   #23
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one more thing... BlueHenStamper can be a really valuable resource in helping us moms understand what it is like for the "other side"... meaning what would be the most important things we need to tell the special ed teachers to know how help our children... It's got to be tough with 15 or so children in the classroom and trying to remember what each child's individual needs are...
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Old 09-23-2007, 03:58 AM   #24
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The only sad part to all of this is that an IEP doesn't necessarily mean that a child will have an aide at all times...unless the IEP specifically states that it is required. (for a wheelchair bound student, visually impaired student, etc...) An aide or paraprofessional will be assigned to a group of students. At least in my school, in our Life Skills groups (those are the students who are not mainstreamed), there is sometimes an aide with the group. We've started a program that has taken our lowest level students out of the mainstreamed classroom and placed them into a vocational classroom...that's where all of the aides are! Next semester, I'll be team teaching English in a classroom where there is a high percentage of Spec Ed students. I guess I'm the "aide" in that case, but since it's a core subject at the high school level, they have to have another teacher in the room to provide the extra help.
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Old 09-23-2007, 11:46 AM   #25
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You are so right on this one - you only get what you ask for... so if you do not ask for an aide and the disability does not mandate one (ie: blindness etc), then you do not get...

I learned the hard way that you really have to think through your child's school day and really think about everything - here's some ideas:

- How far should the child sit from the black board
- How far should the child sit from the teacher's desk
- Should the paperwork & reading assignments be enlarged
- Does an aide need to be in the classroom
- What about windows - is the child easily distracted - should sit away from window or if the child has vision issues, should sit with back facing window to avoid glare...etc...
- How about spelling - is the child never going to spell perfectly - should standards be modified for him/her?
- How about homework - does the child need extra time?
- Standardized tests - should they be enlarged or required to give extra time?
- Testing in general - should the child be tested verbally instead of on paper
- Should the test be modified/ organized differently so that the child does not get overwhelmed
- Do you need a key to the elevator or extra time to get to each class - get out 5 minutes early from each class? Do you need a helper?
- Homework - does your child need help organizing themselves with the assignment notebook?
- How about large print books or books on tape?

These are just some of the things you should be thinking about as your put together your IEP Plan or Section 504 plan... i am sure there are many many more... but do not expect the teachers to tell you what is needed... they do not know your child as well as you do. Do ask the teachers if you forgot anything...

Hope this helps...
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Old 09-30-2007, 06:44 PM   #26
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FYI for homeschooling and disabilities:
There are FEDERAL SET ASIDE FUNDS available for children who qualify for services but are homeschooled, parent placed in a private schoool, etc. These funds can help pay for related services such as occupational therapy, speech therapy, etc.
Contact the school division Director of SPED- they can give you more information.
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Old 09-30-2007, 06:46 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scrappinforNate View Post
FYI for homeschooling and disabilities:
There are FEDERAL SET ASIDE FUNDS available for children who qualify for services but are homeschooled, parent placed in a private schoool, etc. These funds can help pay for related services such as occupational therapy, speech therapy, etc.
Contact the school division Director of SPED- they can give you more information.
Wow! We just got our 504 on Friday. We are planning on starting homeschooling on October 8th. So this information will really help us.

Thanks for posting!
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Old 10-01-2007, 08:47 PM   #28
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Quote:
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Wow! We just got our 504 on Friday. We are planning on starting homeschooling on October 8th. So this information will really help us.

Thanks for posting!
This law does NOT guarantee individual children with disabilities who are parentally placed in private schools or homeschooled any particular services or any services at all. It only covers children who if they were in public school would have an IEP, not children with a 504 plan.

It requires school districts to survey private schools to see if there are any children with disabilities and then come up with some services for some of these kids. This section of the law is confusing at best.

I just don't want you to expect services when you may not get them. But, it doesn't hurt to ask!!
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Old 10-02-2007, 12:23 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joan B View Post
This law does NOT guarantee individual children with disabilities who are parentally placed in private schools or homeschooled any particular services or any services at all. It only covers children who if they were in public school would have an IEP, not children with a 504 plan.

It requires school districts to survey private schools to see if there are any children with disabilities and then come up with some services for some of these kids. This section of the law is confusing at best.

I just don't want you to expect services when you may not get them. But, it doesn't hurt to ask!!
I totally agree here. I'm the bad guy on this side since I'm a Special Ed administrator. First and foremost, school districts are obligated to offer FAPE (Free and Appropriate Public Education) to Individuals with Disabilities. Special Ed is designed to "level the playing field", which basically means it's designed to help an individual with one of the 13 defined handicapping conditions access general ed with services and supports.

So,if your kid has some type of disability and is passing classes and meeting grade level standards, the law says that basically----big disclaimer coming up----they don't *need* special ed services. There are always exceptions to the rule.

I can tell you from my various experiences that Special Ed bankrupts a ton of districts since the govt doesn't fully fund it. All of the money for special ed ultimately comes out of the general fun. In my particular district which has roughly 10,000 students, we are at about a 10 million dollar encroachment which means we spend 10 million more than we are given for our special ed kids. . .many of this money goes to kids with some type of disability who are doing "fine" but get tons of services.

I know we all want the best for our kids because I've got three of my own but if you have the resources to pay for the Cadillac, don't expect the school district to give it to you when all they are legally required to give is the Ford and the unfortunate person writing a report was tired and forgot to dot an i before day #14. . .and this now costs the district 30K or so
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Old 10-02-2007, 02:54 AM   #30
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My post mentioned "students that qualify for services"- meaning, students who would be serviced in public school. I didn't mean to imply that every child gets money, etc. It's worth the OP checking on though as it is her right...
I have dealt with this as well in the school district- sometimes children qualify, sometimes they don't. And, if the money isn't used, it disappears as it is federally set aside. This money doesn't come from the general fund- it comes from a specfic fund for this purpose, as my sped director has stated (in Virginia). But, again, it is only available for those that qualify per district and federal regulations. I was trying to find the law on this but I am running short on time, etc. If anyone can post it, it'd probably help the OP.
Good Luck!
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Old 10-19-2007, 12:43 PM   #31
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Wow you all have opened up my eyes and now have put more questions in my head. My daughter is Bipolar, ODD and ADHD. She does have a 504 plan, however is still way below levels in reading and math for her grade--3. Her new doctor after me telling her everything tells me I need to push for an IEP. THat she qualifies or should qualify. DD is in teh STARS program...which is basically a class of kids with a very strict teacher, the kids are all kids who either failed the FCATS required in 3rd grade and are required to take 3rd grade again, or 2nd grade kids moved to 3rd grade that really probably shouldn't have been. My dd is no where near ready for 3rd grade, to be honest I think if she was back in 1st grade she would have trouble. Her problem is reading comprehension and math. Both very low scores. Never got a passing grade in either in 2nd grade...and 3rd is starting out. Now her class does have a person that comes and helps with reading, but still. I don't know what to do. I am so frustrated. I will be lucky if I make through the year with her. I just don't know what to do. My dr. says that the school might put up a fight about IEP becuase of all the paper work and red tape. But if it is what dd needs then I want to fight for it. But is that what she needs? I don't know. Her dr. said that it is what she needs and even her psychiatrist has recommended it to me...not in writing but just at appointments. SO I don't know if I should get them to write a letter to the school to get dd tested, just kind of a back up for me...or what I should do. SO any advise would help.
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Old 10-20-2007, 02:02 PM   #32
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What will it hurt to have her tested? I would have her new doctor document his findings for you to bring to school, as well as her pschologist. Depending on who controls her 504 plan (is it Spec Ed department?), you may on to request a 504 meeting to discuss her current plan and to request testing. No matter what, it sounds like if she doesn't end up qualifying for an IEP, maybe you could re-work her 504 for more accommodations. Just a thought.
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Old 10-20-2007, 03:39 PM   #33
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There's no reason your dr should have to expect the school would put up a fight--unless, of course, he/she has had previous experience with the school.

If you are concerned, bring it up to your child's teacher and explain that you would like your daughter tested. It is NOT a quick process. In our school, we have a meeting and receive strategies to complete for 3 weeks. We meet again, and go over how the child did with the strategies, and then sometimes we continue for another 3-6 weeks, wait for report cards, etc.
We have only 1 psychologist for a school of 900 students, so often it is a 2 month wait to have testing done. Then it takes awhile to analyze the results, decide whether an IEP is appropriate, meet to write the goals for the IEP, etc.
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Old 10-20-2007, 04:18 PM   #34
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Kristin,

I, too, live in Florida and work for a district in the Panhandle. I would definitely contact the guidance counselor about having your daughter tested for learning disabilities. The counselor should do the initial screening and then recommend that the school psychologist do testing. Once that is complete, there will be a staffing meeting - usually w/the staffing specialist, guidance counselor, teacher, and you. If they say that your daughter doesn't qualify based upon the testing, be adamant that further evaluation be done. You might need to pay for it yourself through your daughter's psychiatrist, but I believe that the district has to accept the testing results from your daughter's psychiatrist as well. Double check that w/the guidance counselor. If you don't get the results you want/need for your daughter at the school level, contact the district ESE supervisor. Don't let it rest at the school level. Trust me, you can get a lot accomplished if/when the district gets involved.

The bottom line is that your daughter needs some help if she is unable to pass the 3rd grade FCAT. Be proactive, assertive, and consistent until they test your daughter. Don't be reactive, aggressive, or wavering as you'll get better and probably more prompt results if you are the former and not the latter.

The 504 is appropriate for the other things you mentioned, but if there are true learning disabilities, then she needs an IEP. The 504 will probably become obsolete if there is an active IEP as the other things you mentioned can be addressed in the IEP, I think.

I'm not aware of any students at our school who have both. And I'm in the know for that kind of info!

Good luck.
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Old 10-21-2007, 09:23 AM   #35
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An evaluation must be conducted within 60 calendar days or whatever time limit your particular state has. If you find you are waiting longer than the prescribed time limit, complain!! There should be no waiting lists beyond the legal time limit. The squeaky wheel really does get attention.

Ask for an evaluation for an IEP in writing. Submit it to the principal, keep a copy. In fact, I always recommend that any parent who has a child with issues should get a notebook and write down every contact with doctors, therapists, school folks. That way you have everything in one place., with phone numbers, etc. Unfortunately, experts do NOT talk to one another and if you can ever get the doctors and the teachers in the same room at the same time that helps tremendously.

If you have any private evaluations, submit them with your request. If your child is found eligible, bring an expert with you to the IEP meeting if you can afford it. Also, all fathers should attend these meetings. Whether we like it or not, fathers are a rarity in the school environment and are shown more respect that plain old moms! You want to be able to make very specific requests at that meeting, and not just respond to whatever the school system offers.
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Old 10-23-2007, 10:08 AM   #36
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My oldest daughter has qualified for a 504 plan & I have a meeting with the school tomorrow to 'write' up the plan. I am very nervous about the whole process, mainly because up until now her injury (which she suffered from during birth) has never affected her school work. Unfortunately, now she is having lots of pain. I have her in PT & OT alternating weekly. Her right arm (she is right handed) is the affected one ~ thus making writing challenging...

She has a great teacher who has really bent over backwards to help her, following all the recommendations that I've brought from the OT/PTs.

But I was wondering that for those of you who have gone thru this process, are there any things that you can think of that I really must have in the formal plan? Anything that you didn't know at first & wished you'd had in it.
BTW, she is in 3rd grade.

Thanks for any info you might have,

Monika
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Old 10-23-2007, 10:15 AM   #37
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Monika, hugs and prayers for you.

The only thing I can think of is to think about next year. She may not have such a great teacher next year so put as much in writing as you can think of so it will in place next year.

Her teacher will have some suggestions as well.

I don't know if theses would work, but it may give you an idea, they are in my son's 504:

where appropiate, write her answers only instead of using whole sentance
dictate her answers
type things
do as much as she can along with the rest of the class, and only get graded n what she can do in that time


I hope it goes well!
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Old 10-23-2007, 10:51 AM   #38
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Monika, here are a few thoughts.

1. Your daughter should be given extra time to write out test answers and a method of taking notes if taking notes is required. Or, she can provide her answers orally. Whatever you think works best. In other words, try and think through every time she needs to write at school and see if she needs extra time or an alternative way of getting it accomplished. I strongly recommend that she learn to type and that the school have a student type lap top for her to use in class. (I sent my son to a typing camp one summer for this same reason.)

2. Her grade should not be penalized if the teacher cannot read her writing.

3. The amount of homework may need to be adjusted if she cannot handle the amount of writing necessary. Her grades should not be penalized for this.

Be nice, be reasonable, but be clear and firm. The plan should be in writing and all teachers should get a copy. Good luck!
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Old 10-23-2007, 11:48 AM   #39
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Quote:
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Monika, here are a few thoughts.

1. Your daughter should be given extra time to write out test answers and a method of taking notes if taking notes is required. Or, she can provide her answers orally. Whatever you think works best. In other words, try and think through every time she needs to write at school and see if she needs extra time or an alternative way of getting it accomplished. I strongly recommend that she learn to type and that the school have a student type lap top for her to use in class. (I sent my son to a typing camp one summer for this same reason.)

2. Her grade should not be penalized if the teacher cannot read her writing.

3. The amount of homework may need to be adjusted if she cannot handle the amount of writing necessary. Her grades should not be penalized for this.

Be nice, be reasonable, but be clear and firm. The plan should be in writing and all teachers should get a copy. Good luck!
I agree. My daughter had an IEP for her dyslexia. Then, through a lot of hardwork and great help from Spec Ed classes...she "caught up". However, she still qualifies for modifications. She doesn't use alot of them, but some of them she does (like she gets a personal spell checker that she can use to help her).

Well, she broke her right wrist a couple of weeks ago and of course since she is right handed this really sent her off the deep end. Writing is already so hard for her and now with this she was totally starting to panic. Well, I just told her to read her answers to me and I would either right them down or type them for her. I took her into class the next day and I explained the situation to her and she was FANTASTIC. The next day she even approached me and told me that it was OK if I typed all of Mariah's sentences, vocab homework and paragraph homework. She totally realizes that Mariah's creative juices are not free flowing when she is worried about how much she is going to have to write.

I am also looking into getting a typing class for Mariah so that she can accomplish this on her own, but for now this works. She writes out all short answers herself and I type out longer assignments for her.

I would definitely recommend talking to the teacher. I have really found ALL of Mariah's teachers to be fantastic in accomodating her disability. I
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Old 10-23-2007, 01:39 PM   #40
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BTW, let us know how it goes.
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