Section 504 is a federal law that protects students with disabilities from being discriminated against at school. It requires the school to give your child the same opportunities as students without disabilities who go to school. The school does this through a "reasonable accommodation or modification."
To be eligible for Section 504, your child must be a "qualified disabled person." This means your child must have "a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits a major life activity." Examples of a major life activity are walking, learning, hearing, seeing, reading, etc.
There are 3 definitions of disability for Section 504:
- your child is diagnosed with a physical or mental disability
- your child has a record (or history) of a disability, or
- your child does not have a disability but the school thinks your child does
Having a disability is not enough to qualify for 504 services. The disability must interfere with your child's ability to learn or access school programs. Your child does not have to receive "special education" services to qualify under Section 504.
Should you have any further questions regarding Section 504, please contact your child’s school.