Dear CEC Members,
On Friday, I shared with you CEC’s response to a stimulus bill involving education provisions and promised to monitor legislation regarding the state of special education during our current COVID disruptions.
Over the weekend, we received additional guidance from the U.S. Department of Education (ED). CEC is pleased that ED has issued helpful information to support educators, students and families.
The new Supplemental Fact Sheet reaffirms the rights of students to receive educational instruction and related services under federal special education law during the COVID-19 pandemic, recognizing that for the safety of students and school personnel, it will likely need to be conducted remotely and with reasonable accommodations. It also provides examples of how schools and educators can provide these services.
ED also articulates how schools may extend reasonable IDEA time frames as needed for eligibility under Part B and Part C, IEPs/IFSPs, reevaluations, state complaints, and due process. These clarifications can help educators and school leaders understand where flexibility lies when striving to teach students in these extraordinary times. CEC is pleased to see that ED continues to be responsive to the needs of educators, students and families.
Over the coming days, CEC will continue to monitor this guidance and provide support for implementing this new information in an accessible and reasonable manner. In addition, we will work with CEC’s Division the Council of Administrators of Special Education (CASE), to elaborate on implementation for our community. Please stay tuned for additional webinars for our community.
Thanks for supporting CEC through your membership and for making it possible for us to contribute to a national dialogue on your behalf. Your commitment showcases the best within our community, and together, that’s how we will continue to succeed in these unchartered times and provide support to the students who rely on us each and every day.
Chad Rummel, M.Ed, CAE
Council for Exceptional Children