Office Of Special Education Programs Clarifies Right To Assistive Technology

By Michael Morris

This article is reprinted from the A.T. Quarterly, Volume 1, Number 3 (1990)

United Cerebral Palsy Associations (UCPA), Inc., working in cooperation with Susan Goodman, an attorney and a parent of a child with a disability, has successfully secured a new policy letter from the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) that clarifies the right of a child with a disability to assistive technology devices and services under P.L. 94-142, the federal mandate for a free appropriate public education.

The letter issued on August 10th states clearly:

State agencies, advocates, and parents should take steps at the local and state level to ensure that this important OSEP policy clarification translates into real benefits for students in the form of access to assistive technology in the schools.

In addition, if students in your state are having problems with accessing assistive technology in your school system, write Judy Schrag, Director, Office of Special Education Programs, 330 C Street, S.W. Washington, DC 20202-2736. Let her know about what is happening to families. If you are interested in receiving a copy of the letter or a list of action steps, please contact the RESNA TA Project Office.

Working together with special education administrators, parents, therapists, nonprofit providers and staff from the "Tech Act" states, this policy memo could open many new and exciting opportunities for children to access assistive technology services with EHA.

(Editor's note: this new column has been added to the newsletter to inform states and organizations about changing policy in the area of AT services.)

The A.T. Quarterly was a newsletter developed by the RESNA TA Project under a contract with the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR), U.S. Department of Education (ED). The content, however, does not necessarily reflect the position or policy of NIDRR/ED and no official endorsement of the material should be inferred.

RESNA TA Project
1700 North Moore Street, Suite 1540
Arlington, VA 22209-1903
Phone: 703-524-6686 | Fax: 703-524-6630 | TTY: 703-524-6639