Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504) is a civil rights statute that protects persons with disabilities from discrimination. It states that “no otherwise qualified individual with a disability shall solely by reason of his or her 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.” The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) contains similar prohibitions against discrimination.
Under Section 504, school districts are required to make their programs and activities (including non-academic and extracurricular programs and activities) accessible to all individuals with disabilities and to provide students with disabilities a free, appropriate public education (FAPE). FAPE under Section 504 is the provision of general education and related services (if eligibility is determined) that are designed to meet the individual educational needs of students with disabilities as adequately as the needs of non-disabled students are met. For more information, please contact your child’s counselor or school psychologist or the Exceptional Student Services department at 970-613-5026.