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504 Educational Plans

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Overview

Both 504 plans and IEPs are designed to support your child's and remove barriers, giving them access to their education using accommodations and supports. But there are some subtle and not-so-subtle differences between them. Use these resources to learn about 504 plans, how they can be used, and what accommodations they can provide.

What is a 504 plan?

A 504 plan can be provided to give a child the support they need to access the learning environment and/or curriculum. While it is not as comprehensive as an IEP, a 504 plan will typically include accommodations and, in some cases, services. 504 plans are supported by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, a civil rights statute that was written to prevent discrimination against people with disabilities. Assistance carrying books, assistive technology devices, or materials with enlarged print are all examples of accommodations that can be provided through a 504 plan.

Contents


Overview

What is a 504 plan?

How are 504s and IEPs different?

When would my child qualify for a 504 plan?

Who do I talk to about getting a 504 plan for my child?

Related Parent Questions

How do I get a 504 plan for my child with a disability?
Once a 504 is requested in writing, the school might conduct an assessment or accept medical documentation, like a letter from your child’s doctor. A meeting will be held, and at that time, the school will determine if they believe assessments are necessary.
Can my child have both a 504 plan and an IEP?
A child can have both, but it isn’t necessary because an IEP will cover the accommodations a child needs. If a child qualifies for an IEP because they have a specific learning disability, but they also have a disease, you can write any accommodations that you need for the disease into the IEP.
How often should a 504 plan be updated?
A 504 plan should be updated or reviewed yearly. Not every school will perform a full assessment every three years, so it is a good idea to contact your school to learn their specific policies.
How do I know if my child needs an IEP or a 504 Plan?
A 504 is sufficient when a child needs support accessing the learning environment or content. A 504 plan will typically only cover accommodations. A child who needs either specialized academic instruction or to be in a special education classroom will probably need an IEP.
Who should attend a meeting for a 504 Plan?
There is no required attendee list for a 504; it is up to the school or district. Parents can request that the child’s teacher attend at a minimum, but a 504 plan does not require the parents to participate.
What kinds of accommodations can be provided under a 504 plan?
Accommodations provided under a 504 plan are designed to give children with disabilities access to the learning environment. Assistance carrying books, assistive technology devices, or materials with enlarged print are all examples of accommodations that can be provided through a 504 plan.

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