What is a 504 plan?
The “504” refers to Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act, which specifies that no one with a disability can be excluded from participating in federally funded programs or activities (including public school).
The term “Disability” refers to a “physical or mental impairment which substantially limits one or more major life activities.
Major life activities include walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning, working, caring for oneself, and performing manual tasks.
The “Disabilities” can include physical impairments, illnesses or injuries, chronic conditions (i.e., asthma or diabetes), learning problems, and communicable diseases
So what does a 504 plan actually do for a student?
The 504 plan spells out modifications and accommodations that will be needed for the student to have an appropriate opportunity to perform in school.
May include specific testing accommodations to ensure that they receive a fair opportunity to demonstrate their skills on school assessments.
May include program modifications that occur within the classroom in order to make sure that the student remains safe and has the opportunity to perform at an appropriate level.
If my child/student requires a 504 plan, what do I need to do?
Contact the school psychologist or counselor at the school and ask for information.
The school building will need written documentation of the disability (i.e., signed documentation from a pediatrician or evaluator).