What are IEP and 504 Plans?
When we mention Individualized Education Plan, or IEP what does it mean? An IEP provides curriculum that is modified to assist a student’s ability to receive instruction in a way that better fits their needs. Examples of modified curriculum may include classroom accommodations such as a para professional, specialized instruction and assistive technology.
An IEP should include present levels of performance describing baseline information for each area impacted by the student’s disability. This should be specific and measurable. Also, goals for the next academic year that are specific, measurable, achievable results, time limited (SMART). Benchmarks that specify performance levels needed to accomplish goals. Objectives should also be measurable and half way points between the student’s present level of performance and their academic goals for the year. Everything we are talking about should use the least restrictive environment and allow for interaction with peers without disabilities. We mentioned assistive technology before, and it must be a consideration to help the student reach their goals. A detailed description of special education services should be provided along with a schedule indicating when the student would receive specific services.
A 504 plan ensures that students with disabilities have access to accommodations that can help them achieve their academic goals. For a student to qualify for a 504 plan, they must be diagnosed with a physical or emotional disability or impairment such as ADHD. The 504 plan then ensures that accommodations are made in the classroom. Accommodations can be assistive technology, extra time to take exams or finish assignments as well as alternative testing rooms.
If you have questions regarding IEP or 504 plans please call Freedom Resource Center at 1-800-450-0459 or visit us at freedomrc.org.