Department of Education Releases Guidance on Students with Disabilities in Private Schools
The U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services issued new guidance on Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Part B services for students with disabilities placed in private schools by their parents. Specifically, the document addresses those students for whom free, appropriate public education (FAPE) is not an issue—meaning their parents are not seeking financial reimbursement for the private school placement.
Since students in this classification are not entitled to the same services and protections as students with disabilities in public schools, the document addresses the legal requirements and guidelines for state educational agencies, local educational agencies, and other stakeholders. The guidance also addresses new topic areas such as preschool children with disabilities, state-funded school voucher and scholarship programs, and extended public school closures such as those experienced during the COVID-19 pandemic.