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Virtual Schools Must Follow Federal Special Education Law

Aug. 11, 2016

Over the years virtual learning and online schools have increased across the country. On August 5th the U.S. Departments of Education issued guidance to states and school districts regarding their responsibilities for students with disabilities attending public virtual schools. States and school districts that allow virtual schools must comply with all aspects of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. This means ensuring that the provision of a free, appropriate public education in the least restrictive environment are met. It also means that virtual schools must have “child find” policies and procedures in effect to ensure that all children with disabilities residing in the State, including those who attend virtual schools, who are in need of special education and related services, regardless of the severity of their disability, are identified, located, and evaluated.