The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)

Know this law that makes available a free appropriate public education to eligible children with disabilities throughout the nation and ensures special education and related services to those children.

The IDEA governs how states and public agencies provide early intervention, special education, and related services to eligible infants, toddlers, children, and youth with disabilities. Infants and toddlers, birth through age 2, with disabilities and their families receive early intervention services under IDEA Part C. Children and youth ages 3 through 21 receive special education and related services under IDEA Part B. For more information on IDEA by State, click here.

IDEA requires Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) for students with disabilities. An IEP is a written plan that provides free special education services, related services and supports to meet a child’s unique needs. That includes specialized instruction.

A 504 Plan is developed for students who have a disability, that doesn’t require special education services. The plan is geared toward ensuring students has equitable access to a learning environment.