Announced on October 2, 2017
Stating that the move would in no way impact the services currently received by disabled students, DeVos rescinded 72 special education guidance documents that her department referred to as “outdated, unnecessary or ineffective.” Many of the documents, including those titled “Implementing Community-based Educational Programs for Students with Disabilities, “ and“Procedural Safeguards and Due Process Procedures for Parents and Children with Disabilities,” clarified and explained the parameters of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and the Rehabilitation Act. LEARN MORE
While it may be true that the removal of these documents has no real policy implications, some remain wary. Virginia Rep. Bobby Scott, the ranking Democrat on the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, explained that many of these memos focused on “critical clarifications of the regulations required to meet the needs of students with disabilities.” During her initial confirmation hearings, it was revealed that DeVos wasn’t even aware that IDEA, the act that many of these rescinded documents explain, was federal law, causing many to view this current move to rescind many explanatory documents as rushed or not well thought out. Despite the confusion around what the decision actually means, many democrats have still begun stepping forward to reaffirm their support for the country’s disabled students. Sen. Kamala D. Harris (D-Calif.) expressed her support via tweet stating, “This administration’s campaign against students with disabilities continues. We should be doing more, not less, to help them.” LEARN MORE
- National Center for Learning Disabilities -Working to create a society in which every person has the academic, social and emotional skills needed to succeed, the NCLD works to transform schools and advocate for equal rights for students and adults with learning and attention issues.
- Learning Disabilities Association of America– Support the LDA, the association that led the push for passage of the first federal legislation mandating a free, appropriate, public education for students with disabilities
- ACLU– An organization who works for an America free of discrimination against people with disabilities, come explore the many ways to support the ACLU.
This brief was compiled by Cindy Stansbury. If you have comments or want to add the name of your organization to this brief please contact, firstname.lastname@example.org.