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IDEA Implications on the Professions

Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)

Learn more about what IDEA really means and its impact on the professions by reading the following issue briefs.

Assistive Technology

IDEA includes a definition of "assistive technology device." Congress added an exception to the existing definition as follows: "The term [assistive technology] does not include a medical device that is surgically implanted, or the replacement of such device." The same exact language was also added as an exception to the "related services" definition.

Birth-to-Six Programs

IDEA allows States to combine their Part C early intervention and Part B, Section 619 pre-school grants to offer a unified birth to six program to better serve families of children with special needs and to use Part B and Part C monies to do so.

Early Intervening Services

IDEA allows local educational agencies (LEAs) to use up to 15 percent of its IDEA Part B funds for supportive services to help students in kindergarten through grade 12 not yet identified with disabilities, but who require additional academic and behavioral supports to succeed in a general education environment.

Specific Learning Disabilities

IDEA 2004 retained the definition of specific learning disability as included in previous versions of IDEA since 1975.

Paperwork Reduction/Individualized Education Programs (IEPs)

Paperwork has consistently emerged as a top concern for ASHA's school-based members.

Qualified Providers

IDEA eliminated the requirement that state education personnel standards meet the highest requirement for a profession or discipline in that state. Under IDEA 1997, standards for school-based related services providers must have met the "highest requirement in the state" for a profession or discipline, although waivers were allowed on an emergency, temporary, or provisional basis.

Go to ASHA's IDEA website.

ASHA Corporate Partners