The following is information about civil rights and the Americans with Disabilities Act as they pertain to the education of students.
SECTION 504 OF THE REHABILITATION ACT OF 1973
What is a Section 504 Accommodation Plan?
A 504 Accommodation plan describes the accommodations that must be implemented to guarantee that disabled students have equal access to educational opportunities. This equal access is assured by federal civil rights legislation and regulation.
What are the limits of a 504 Accommodation Plan?
A 504 plan does not address issues of placement nor does it prescribe services, in general either education or special education.
A 504 plan does not modify curriculum or standards
I. THE LEGAL MANDATE
“No otherwise qualified individual with handicaps in the United States shall, solely by reason of his or her handicap, as defined in section 706(8) of this title, be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity conducted by any Executive agency or by the United States Postal Service.” (29 U.S.C. Sec.794)
(i-iii) Individuals with handicaps
(A – B) physical or mental impairment
(C) major life activities
(D) has a record of such an impairment
(E – F) is regarded as having an impairment
“ . . . any individual who:
i. has a physical or mental impairment which substantially limits one or more of such person’s major life activities,
ii. has a record of such impairment, or
iii. is regarded as having such an impairment.” (29 U.S.C. Sec.706 (8))
A. “. . . any physiological disorder or condition, cosmetic disfigurement, or anatomical loss affecting one or more of the following body systems: neurological; musculoskeletal; special sense organs; respiratory; including speech organs; cardiovascular; reproductive; digestive; genital-urinary; hermic and lymphatic; skin; and endocrine; or
B. any mental or psychological disorder, such as mental retardation, organic brain syndrome, emotional or mental illness, and specific learning disabilities.”(34 Code of Federal Regulations Part 104.3)
C. “… functions such as caring for one’s self, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning and working.”(34 Code of Federal Regulations Part 104.3)
D. “…has a history of, or has been classified as having, a mental or physical impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.
E. “. . . has a physical or mental impairment that does not substantially limit major life activities but is treated by a recipient as constituting such a limitation;
F. has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits major life activities only as a result of the attitudes of others toward such impairment; or has none of the impairments defined, but is treated by a recipient as having such an impairment.” (34 Code of Federal Regulations Part 104.3)
Parent/Student Rights under Section 504
Parents have the right to:
Have your child take part in, and receive benefits from public education programs without discrimination based on disability.
Have the District advise you as to your rights under federal law.
Receive notice with respect to identification, evaluation, or placement of your child.
Have your child receive a free appropriate public education. This includes the right to be educated with non-disabled students to the maximum extent appropriate. It also includes the right to have the District make reasonable accommodations to allow your child an equal opportunity to participate in school and school-related activities:
Have your child educated in facilities and receive services comparable to those provided students without disabilities.
Have your child receive special education and related services if she/he is found to be eligible under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), or to receive reasonable accommodations under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act.
Have eligibility and educational placement decisions made based upon a variety of information sources, and by individuals who know the student, the eligibility data, and placement options.
Give your child an equal opportunity to participate in nonacademic and extracurricular activities offered by the school District through provision of reasonable accommodations.
Examine all relevant records relating to decisions regarding your child’s identification, eligibility, educational program, and placement.
Obtain copies of educational records at a reasonable cost unless the fee would effectively deny you access to the records.
Receive a response from the District to reasonable requests for explanations and interpretations of your child’s records.
Request amendment of your child’s educational records if there is reasonable cause to believe that they are inaccurate, misleading or otherwise in violation of the privacy rights of your child. If the District refuses this request, it shall notify you within a reasonable time, and advise you of the right to a hearing.
Request impartial due process hearing related to decisions regarding your child’s identification, eligibility, and educational placement. You and your child may take part in the hearing and have an attorney represent you at your own cost.
File a complaint with the District when you believe your child’s rights have been violated.
Title IX is a law passed in 1972 that requires gender equity for boys and girls in every educational program that receives federal funding.
Millis Public Schools has a tradition of care and respect for the individual student. Each student is encouraged to grow intellectually, emotionally, physically, and socially. All members of the community may expect to feel safe and may expect that their person, property and opinions will be respected. Each member of the community is expected to contribute to creating an atmosphere of trust. School should be a setting in which respect for rules and common decency are accepted by all as the necessary structure for both learning and community, and where those in authority try always to strike a balance between individual rights and the general good.
District Title IX Coordinator
Sue Anne Marks
Director of Student Services
Millis Public Schools Non-Discrimination Statement
Millis Public School District is an equal opportunity employer and does not unlawfully discriminate because of race, color, sex, religion, national origin, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation or age in its employment policies or in the environment or participation of students in its educational and school-sponsored programs and activities, all in compliance with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 Act, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation and M.G.L. chapter 76, section 5.
Staff and Students who feel that they have been discriminated against should follow the procedures for addressing complaints about discrimination set out in the Staff and Students’ Rights and Responsibilities section of the District Handbook of Policies and Procedures for Students and Staff.