Recommended Resources

Understanding Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders: A Comprehensive Guide for PreK – Grade 8 Educators Developed by Duke University, this guide is designed for every educator (e.g. teachers, special education teachers, resource specialists, speech and language specialists, school nurses, psychologists and occupational therapists) who work with K-8 elementary and middle school level students.

Teaching Students with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders  Developed by Florida State University Center for Prevention & Early Intervention Policy, this resource guide provides important information to assist educators and school health care professionals in understanding FASD.

Strategies for Success A NOFAS Webinar: Students with FASD: Simple Strategies for Behavioral and Academic Success

individuals with disabilities education act (idea)

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) entitles children to a free and appropriate public education (FAPE).  FAPE is one of the important legal terms for you to understand.  

“Free” means that all eligible students will be educated at public expense.  

“Appropriate” refers to an education which is tailored to the individual’s needs.  

“Public” refers to the right of those with disabilities to be educated in the public school system.  

“Education” indicates that the child will receive the services indicated in their Individualized Education Program (IEP).

504 Plans

The 504 Plan is a plan developed to ensure that a child who has a disability identified under the law and is attending an elementary or secondary educational institution receives accommodations that will ensure their academic success and access to the learning environment.  Students with 504 Plans do not require specialized instruction.

individualized education program (iep)

The IEP is a written document that’s developed for each public school child who is eligible for special education. The IEP is created through a team effort and reviewed at least once a year. Before an IEP can be written, your child must be eligible for special education.

so, what is the difference between 504 and ieps? subtle, but important...

Not all students who have disabilities require specialized instruction. For students with disabilities who do require specialized instruction, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) controls the procedural requirements, and an IEP is developed. The IDEA process is more involved than that of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and requires documentation of measurable growth. 

For students with disabilities who do not require specialized instruction but need the assurance that they will receive equal access to public education and services, a document is created to outline their specific accessibility requirements. Students with 504 Plans do not require specialized instruction, but, like the IEP, a 504 Plan should be updated annually to ensure that the student is receiving the most effective accommodations for his/her specific circumstances. 

Follow this link for more information on the differences between 504 and IEPs.