What is Section 504?
Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1073 is a federal civil rights statute, which protects qualified individuals with disabilities from discrimination in district services and programs.
Who is protected from discrimination?
Under this law, an individual with a disability is a person with a physical or mental impairment or a person who has a history of, or is regarded as having a physical or mental impairment which substantially limits one or more major life activities. Major life activities include but are not limited to caring for one’s self, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, working, performing manual tasks, learning, reading, and concentration.
How do you access a 504 Accommodation Plan?
If you suspect that your child has a physical or mental impairment that requires accommodations, special services and /or supports to enable your child to participate in school sponsored academic and nonacademic programs and/or activities, please contact the building principal to discuss your concerns to determine whether a referral to the 504 team is needed. If a referral is necessary, send a letter to the Building Principal requesting that your child be referred to the Section 504 Committee.
Once a referral is submitted will my child have to be tested?
Not necessarily. The Section 504 Chairperson will review all relevant background, current school-based testing and available information such as teacher reports and report cards. If necessary, the Chairperson will determine what if any standardized testing is necessary to determine whether the student has a disability that substantially limits access to academic programs or extracurricular activities.
Who determines eligibility for a 504 Plan?
Upon completion of an evaluation, the 504 Chairperson will invite the parents to a meeting. The 504 team is comprised of persons knowledgeable about the student, the evaluations, the needs of the child and the placement options.
What determines eligibility for a 504 plan?
To determine whether or not a student has a disability that requires a 504 Accommodation Plan the Team must determine whether the student is disabled as defined by the law. If the team finds the student has a disability that meets the 504 definition the Team shall determine if the disability substantially limits a major life activity and what, if any accommodations, and/or supports are necessary to enable the student to participate in school sponsored academic and extra-curricular programs and activities to the same extent as non-disabled students.
What if I am not happy with the outcome of the 504 meeting?
Where there is a disagreement, a parent may request a review of any determination by the 504 Team with the District’s 504 Compliance Officer, Laura Sullivan, 914-478-6261. The parent also has the right to request an impartial hearing or mediation.If you would like more information regarding Section 504 or would like to make a referral to the Section 504 Committee please contact your child's building principal.