The first in a four-part series: Life After IEPs Series.
Once high school ends, so do IEPs, this month, the Free Bridges Helpdesk Transition Tip Tuesdays explores post-secondary, IEP-free life. Topics discussed include:
Part 1: When Do Things Change, and Why?
Part 2: Changes in Rights to Instructional Services
Part 3: Changes in Rights to Accessible Equipment
Part 4: Changes in Rights to Accommodations and Modifications
In this first installment of the series, we examine when and why students are no longer eligible for IEPs.
When do I stop having an IEP?
Most IEPs for blind/low vision students end because the student graduates from high school or “ages out” at age 21, in Maryland.
Why do IEPs stop?
IEPs (individualized education plans) are required by a law known as the IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act). The IDEA provides educational rights for students with disabilities in public school through high school graduation or age 21, whichever comes first. Thus, high school graduation or “aging out” ends a student’s eligibility for an IEP, even if the disability still exists, and even if the student still has educational needs.
There are other laws that protect individuals with disabilities, including blind and low vision. These laws, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504) and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), protect individuals of all ages, but IEPs often provide similar and additional protections. Once the IEP is no longer in effect, blind/low vision students still have Section 504 and ADA protections.
Next week, we’ll explore how rights to instructional services change under Section 504 and the ADA.
Follow the Bridges Helpdesk Facebook page for more transition tips, and please contact the Free Helpdesk for Maryland Blind/Low Vision Transition Students, Families, and Educators anytime using:
- Our Accessible web form
- Email: Helpdesk@imagemd.org
- Text: Send to: (410) 305-9199
- Bridges Helpdesk Facebook page or Facebook Messenger
- Voice mail: Call (443) 320-4003, leave a voice mail message, and we will return your call
This unique project is being coordinated through The IMAGE Center of Maryland, a center for independent living in Towson, and it is funded by a grant from the Maryland Department of Education Division of Special Education/Early Intervention Services.