Kirsch-Goodwin & Kirsch, PLLC
8900 East Pinnacle Peak Rd.
Scottsdale, AZ 85255
Arizona Special Education Laws
Experienced and Dedicated Arizona Special Education Lawyers
Understanding the complex system of state and federal laws that control special education in Arizona can be overwhelming for parents. We know this feeling firsthand, and we are dedicated special education lawyers who are committed to helping parents navigate the system and understand their legal rights.
At Kirsch-Goodwin & Kirsch, you will find attorneys who understand your concerns as a parent. We use our personal experience to help protect the rights of your child. We are an Arizona education and special education law firm that proudly represents students with disabilities and their families.
An Overview of Special Education Laws in Arizona
The most important federal laws for special education are the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. These federal laws require schools to provide a free appropriate public education (FAPE) to children with disabilities.
This law includes many requirements for schools, but there are three primary responsibilities when it comes to educating special education students.
- First, a school must have a system in place to identify those students who are struggling or may qualify for special education services. This duty is sometimes called a child find and is a system for students at all grade levels. It should be designed to keep school officials and teachers on the lookout for students who may need extra support. If a school suspects that a child may need extra services, they should do a referral.
- Second, schools must evaluate students who they believe may need support. The evaluation process must make a determination of whether or not the student meets the legal requirements of a child with a disability. The IDEA and Section 504 define child with a disability differently. The initial evaluation should also determine the educational needs of the child.
- Finally, schools must serve students by providing a free appropriate public education or FAPE. This means that the school must have a plan in place for the student that is designed for each individual student. For students who qualify under IDEA, the plan is called an individualized education plan or IEP. For students who qualify under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, the plan is called a 504 plan.
As a parent you have the right to receive prior written notice of a school's action regarding your child. If you have a dispute or disagreement with the school, you have legal rights with respect to the process that a school must use when resolving a special education dispute. This may involve mediation, a resolution meeting or a due process hearing. It is critical that you understand your rights at each stage of the process.
If your student has been identified or is currently receiving educational services under an IEP, there are additional laws that a school must follow when disciplining a student with a disability.
Do You and Your Child Need Legal Advice or Legal Representation
For more information about how we can help your child, call our Arizona education law firm at 480-585-0600
orcontact our office online