Will my child’s IEP or Section 504 Plan apply to her once she goes to college?

  • The process of getting services for special needs children at college is very different from the process for secondary schools.
  • By law, secondary schools are obligated to reach out to special needs families and to help figure out what services are required, and to provide those services. Colleges are not obligated.
  • You must be extremely proactive: they will not contact you and probably will not help you. You must contact the college’s Office of Disabilities, and you must prove to them what disabilities exist and what services will be required. Approach these offices armed with your evaluations and your history of the IEPs and 504s, which will be very helpful in convincing the college.
  • It is truly all up to you: if your child will need services in college, approach the college very early; don’t wait until there’s a problem and then try to say that you should have got an accommodation. They are not obligated and not liable.
  • It may be very helpful to engage the services of an attorney who knows the law, the process, and how to maximize your success.