Education is a basic right of any individual; this right includes children who are considered the Hope of the Fatherland. Free and Appropriate Public Education or FAPE guarantees all rights of are being implemented which also includes the rights of those with disabilities. Two laws were pass on and were enacted on different years to provide the necessary rights to protect children or the youth with disabilities and this are the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and the Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
Re-empowered in 1997, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) of 1990 is a Federal law to protect the rights of students with disabilities. IDEA fully constitutes the rights of every student with disabilities and provides full access to free education. Special educational program and manner of implementation was organized and drafted to meet the special needs of students with disabilities such as the Individualized Educational Program (IEP).
Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities. Access to education of a child with disability is the main right this law implements. Basic physical needs that require alterations are enhanced to necessitate and facilitate the formal education of the child such as modified chair and accommodation.
Unlike its counterpart, Section 504 does not obligate schools to offer Individualized Educational Program (IEP). IDEA has more safeguarding policy and regulations to meet a child\’s disability requirement. Between the two laws, IDEA is much preferred by parents and children with disabilities because of the designed program that is more in-line with their needs.
Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 was amended to incorporate the program of Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008 (ADAA). US President Barack Obama signed ADAA last September 25, 2008 and the Act was effective last January 1, 2009. ADAA defines a more concise approach to the word disability. It broadens the function, coverage and implementation of the law in favor of any individual with disabilities. Section 504 as a law now provides a wider scope of laws to facilitate the educational demand of every child with disabilities.