Essay Sample Analyzing Special Education Legislation

Published: 2022-05-04
Essay Sample Analyzing Special Education Legislation
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Law Pedagogy
Pages: 7
Wordcount: 1775 words
15 min read

Foundational knowledge influence on professional practice

In 1975 the Congress enacted the education for all handicapped children act in an effort to back localities and states in guarding the rights of the handicapped children, meeting the children's needs of, and enhancing the outcomes for the children's with disabilities and their families (Katsiyannis et al 2001). In the year 1997, these landmark legislation was amended and renamed the individuals with disabilities education act (IDEA) (Wright 2013). In those twenty-five years of enforcing the law, substantial improvements have been made in an attempt to meet the national objectives for creating and executing efficacy policies and programs that will provide special education, early intervention, and other interrelated services. Before the enactment of the IDEA, many of the disabled kids were denied their right to education and the opportunity to learn like those other normal children. For instance, the schools in the united states in 1970 admitted only one in five kids who were disabled and most states had laws in place which barred some students who were deaf, blind, mentally retarded and emotionally disturbed (Katsiyannis et al 2001).

Trust banner

Is your time best spent reading someone else’s essay? Get a 100% original essay FROM A CERTIFIED WRITER!

Presently there is a provision of early intervention services and programs to over 200000 qualified toddlers and infants and their families, whereas approximately 6 million kids and young people obtain special education and interrelated services to aid their individual requirements (Katsiyannis et al 2001). The IDEA has also succeeded in educating many children's in the neighborhoods academic institutions, instead of separate special schools and institutions (Martin 1996). This has improved the rate of high school graduations among the disabled, higher education enrollment and employment opportunities for the youths with a disability who are a direct beneficiary of the IDEA.

History of special education legislation

Currently, children cannot be reasonably successful in life without education. In order to comprehend the fight that has been fought today for children with a disability, it is imperative that we examine the traditions and history that is related to special education and public schools. The oldest special education program was the delinquency prevention programs for those children thought to be at risk and lived in the urban slums (Katsiyannis et al 2001). By 1890 many of these kids were learning metalwork, carpentry, cooking and sewing. The early special program also emphasized on the moral training of the African-American children.

Special lessons and school for children with disability have been in existence in the 19th and 20th century especially for the blind and deaf students. In the 1940s programs for children with specific learning disabilities turned out to be common, terms like brain injury became common (Wright 2013). Nevertheless, most of this programs were private and the quality and availability of the program varied amongst states. Hence for most kids with disability special education program was not available.

It's in 1954 that the United States Supreme Court made a revolutionary civil right verdict in the case of Brown v board of education whereby the court ruled all the children should have equal education opportunities (Martin 1996). After this ruling, the parents of disabling kids started making lawsuits against their local schools for prohibiting and isolating the kids with a disability based on their disabilities.

Elementary and secondary education act of 1965(ESEA) enacted by the Congress to tackle the Unequal education chances for the disadvantaged kids. This legislation was amended in 1966 to create a grant program to assist the states in providing special education for students with a disability (Wright 2013)In 1970 the education of the handicapped act was passed in an attempt to motivate regions to create a special educational program for the disabled. In the 1972 two cases, PARC and mills investigated the education status of the disabled children and realized that majority was not getting a suitable education. This study made the Congress decree that they should be given good education to help them become productive citizens. As a result, the legislation was made in 1972 allowing all the disabled kids right to education (Martin 1996). This led to the 1975 milestone education activities for all handicapped kids. A process was established where local agencies and states will be held responsible for giving education services to this group of people (Martin 1996). This act was amended severally.

In 2004 individual with disability education act was amended whereby the Congress made changes to and redefined the special education legislation and was named IDEA 2004 (Wright 2013). In this move, the congress emphasized on the accountability and enhance results by focusing on early intervention reading and research-based instruction by requiring teachers to be highly qualified and professional. The major purposes of this act are to disseminate education that meets the needs of the specific student and train the individual for employment, independent living and further education.

Current legislation that guides IEP development

An individualized education program is an account for a child with disability that is created, revised and reviewed in a convention and involves specific content such as the child's current academic achievement level, a statement of how the kid socializes with other in school, and a description of how the kid's annual goals will be achieved et cetera.

The IDEA is one of the main legislation that impacts on the development of the IEP, it directs how the education of students who are qualified special education and interrelated services should be conducted (Bachrach 2016). In this respect, IDEA has eight core principles that are helpful in designing and implementation of an IEP. The most outstanding law is the FAPE which states that those eligible for special education will receive a free appropriate public education (FAPE) (Fielder 2009). On the other hand, FERPA is a legislation passed to control who can see the files and documents that are linked to the students in the school. It is, therefore, the disabled kid's parent's duty, responsibility and right to assist in ensuring that their children receive a suitable education.

The IEP process is an efficient and effective way to solve how our kid's functions and learn even though the process is complex. Parents join hands with the educators to create a plan to help their children succeed in school (Fielder 2009). The plan outlines the objectives set for the kid during the academic year in addition to the necessary individualized support required to assist them to realize them. In writing the IEP as required by law specific individuals must be involved in the process they all should be properly designated and qualified (Bacharach 2016). A convention is held within a month after the eligibility of the kid to write the IEP plan. All the members are required to come up with important ideas to help in the development of the plan. The agents will also have the opportunity to review the plan developed (Heward 2009). This shows that parents are key members together with teachers. It is a requirement that the regular education teachers of the student under question be involved in the IEP team work.

The next and most important step is when the members of the team decide what things to include in the IEP. They usually discuss the children's education requirements as directed in the CER and develop short-term and long-term goals that are specific and can be measured (Bacharach 2016). The front page of the plan states the help services the kid will be given. Some of these services will be provided on a consultative basis while other will be disseminated in the classroom. The IEP should be revised every year and ensure that the quality of the service meets the student's requirements. It is also important to note that the plan can be adjusted anytime as it may be deemed appropriate.

Ethical standards and evidence-based practice

Professional special education teachers are guided by the CEC professional ethical principles, practice rules, and professional policies in a manner that they give utmost respect to the needs and character of the student. The special educators strive to give the learners the pinnacle results that will improve their survival ability in a manner that shows respect to their background dignity and cultural values and beliefs (Heward 2009). They are also required to observe professional integrity and competence through carrying out professional reasoning that will assist the disabled students and their families. They are also required to encourage and cultivate participation of the inhibited students in their school and communal activities.

The special education professionals should embrace teamwork and consult others who work in the field of educating the inhibited kids. They are also required to maintain good ties with the student's family which makes it easier in communicating and providing feedback on the IEP. They are required to use instructional data, professional knowledge, evidence and research to inform the special education process. The professionals are also required to protect the psychological well-being of their students. The special educators should practice the professional ethics, standards, and policies while observing the law, regulations, and policies. They are also required to advocate for professional environment and resources that will help improve learning outcomes for the specific kids with disability. They should be actively involved in the improvement of the profession through a professional organization.

Support resources

Finding the necessary resources in the special education area is vital in assisting students with disabilities succeed. First and foremost the teachers should consider going back to school and advance their education in the area (Heward 2009). The IEP and 504 plan resources are provided by the national center for learning disabilities where one can obtain articles and videos to increase their knowledge in the field. Being always informed is another way to enhance your skill in the field (Fielder 2009). The national association of special education teachers gives news and updates on special education teaching methods. The organization has a website whereby one can access e-journals focusing on the trends in special education. Through the social media, there is a wide community to consult on special education.

In conclusion, through the appropriate legislation, the United States has been able to provide individualized education to students with disability equipping them with the necessary knowledge and skills for a brighter and independent future.


Bachrach, S.J. 2016. Individualized educational plan.Reviewed by: Steven J. Bachrach, MD.Date reviewed: September 2016

Fiedler, C. R., & Van Haren, B. (2009). A comparison of special education administrators' and teachers' knowledge and application of ethics and professional standards. The Journal of Special Education, 43(3), 160-173.

Heward, W. L. (2009). Exceptional children: An introduction to special education. Pearson College Div.

Katsiyannis, A., Yell, M. L., & Bradley, R. (2001). Reflections on the 25th anniversary of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Remedial and Special Education, 22(6), 324-334.

Martin, E. W., Martin, R., & Terman, D. L. (1996). The legislative and litigation history of special education. The future of children, 25-39.HISTORY

Wright, P. 2013. The History of Special Education Law.

Cite this page

Essay Sample Analyzing Special Education Legislation. (2022, May 04). Retrieved from

Request Removal

If you are the original author of this essay and no longer wish to have it published on the SpeedyPaper website, please click below to request its removal:

Liked this essay sample but need an original one?

Hire a professional with VAST experience!

24/7 online support

NO plagiarism