Michelle Diament reports at Disability Scoop:
Beyond offering a free appropriate public education, individualized education programs for students with disabilities should meet grade-level requirements, federal education officials say.
In guidance released Tuesday, the U.S. Department of Education said that all IEPs should conform to “the state’s academic content standards for the grade in which the child is enrolled.”
According to the guidance, IEP teams must ensure that programs feature grade-level academics, but that instruction and support services are tailored so children can learn the material and progress toward achieving their individual goals.
There are caveats, however, for the “very small number” of students with the most significant cognitive disabilities, write Michael K. Yudin and Melody Musgrove from the Education Department’s Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services in their seven-page “Dear Colleague” letter. States are allowed to establish “alternate academic achievement standards” for these students.