Chapter 15 of Title 22 of the regulations of the State Board of Education addresses the responsibility of school districts to comply with the requirements of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and its implementing regulations at 34 CFR Part 104 (relating to nondiscrimination of people with disabilities and activities receiving federal financial assistance). The purpose of the federal law and the state regulations is to require that public educational agencies ensure that protected handicapped students have equal opportunity to participate in school programs and extracurricular activities to the maximum extent appropriate to the ability of the protected handicapped student in question.
Local Education Agencies shall provide each protected handicapped student enrolled in the district, without cost to the student or family, those related aids, services, or accommodations which are needed to afford the student equal opportunity to participate in and obtain the benefits from the school programs and extracurricular activities without discrimination, and to the maximum extent appropriate to the student's abilities. To meet the criteria for services under Chapter 15, a student needs to be identified as a protected handicapped student.
To meet the criteria of a protected handicapped student a child must be of school age and have a physical or mental disability that substantially limits or prohibits participation in or access to an aspect of the student's school program.
For those students who have a handicapping condition that requires accommodations or services to appropriately access their regular education program, an evaluation for an educational service agreement can be requested. Students receiving services under this category are typically children who are not eligible for special education services, yet demonstrate a documented disability that requires special consideration within the educational setting. In order to request a Chapter15/Section 504 evaluation a parent should contact their child’s guidance counselor, instructional support teacher, school nurse or principal.