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ED’s Section 504 regulations as currently written are valid and OCR is enforcing them consistent with the Amendments Act. Most of these concern identification of students who are protected by Section 504 and the means to obtain an appropriate education for such students. Section 504 provides: "No otherwise qualified individual with a disability in the United States . The regulations implementing Section 504 in the context of educational institutions appear at 34 C. This resource document clarifies pertinent requirements of Section 504. Department of Education, enforces Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended, (Section 504) a civil rights statute which prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities.In addition, OCR is currently evaluating the impact of the Amendments Act on OCR’s enforcement responsibilities under Section 504 and Title II of the ADA, including whether any changes in regulations, guidance, or other publications are appropriate. INTRODUCTION An important responsibility of the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) is to eliminate discrimination on the basis of disability against students with disabilities. Section 504 is a federal law designed to protect the rights of individuals with disabilities in programs and activities that receive Federal financial assistance from the U. For additional information, please contact the Office for Civil Rights. What is the jurisdiction of the Office for Civil Rights (OCR), the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) and state departments of education/instruction regarding educational services to students with disabilities? OCR also enforces Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (Title II), which extends this prohibition against discrimination to the full range of state and local government services, programs, and activities (including public schools) regardless of whether they receive any Federal financial assistance.The Amendments Act broadens the interpretation of disability. ." OCR enforces Section 504 in programs and activities that receive Federal financial assistance from ED. The Section 504 regulations require a school district to provide a "free appropriate public education" (FAPE) to each qualified student with a disability who is in the school district's jurisdiction, regardless of the nature or severity of the disability.The Amendments Act does not require ED to amend its Section 504 regulations. shall, solely by reason of her or his disability, be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance . Recipients of this Federal financial assistance include public school districts, institutions of higher education, and other state and local education agencies. Under Section 504, FAPE consists of the provision of regular or special education and related aids and services designed to meet the student's individual educational needs as adequately as the needs of nondisabled students are met.

OCR may: (1) initiate administrative proceedings to terminate Department of Education financial assistance to the recipient; or (2) refer the case to the Department of Justice for judicial proceedings. Section 504 is a Federal statute that may be enforced through the Department's administrative process or through the Federal court system.Such incidents may involve the unwarranted exclusion of disabled students from educational programs and services. What protections does OCR provide against retaliation? A recipient is prohibited from intimidating, threatening, coercing, or discriminating against any individual for the purpose of interfering with any right or privilege secured by Section 504. If both parties are willing to utilize this approach, OCR will work with the parties to facilitate resolution by providing each an understanding of pertinent legal standards and possible remedies. A school district is out of compliance when it is violating any provision of the Section 504 statute or regulations. What sanctions can OCR impose on a school district that is out of compliance?An agreement reached between the parties is not monitored by OCR. OCR initially attempts to bring the school district into voluntary compliance through negotiation of a corrective action agreement.At the postsecondary educational level, a qualified student with a disability is a student with a disability who meets the academic and technical standards requisite for admission or participation in the institution's educational program or activity. Does the nature of services to which a student is entitled under Section 504 differ by educational level? Public elementary and secondary recipients are required to provide a free appropriate public education to qualified students with disabilities.Such an education consists of regular or special education and related aids and services designed to meet the individual educational needs of students with disabilities as adequately as the needs of students without disabilities are met.

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