Section 504

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Section 504

What is Section 504?

Section 504 is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities. Section 504 ensures that a child with a disability has equal access to an education. A child may receive accommodations and modifications.

How does Section 504 define "Disability?"

A person is disabled within the definition of Section 504 if the following conditions are met:

  • The child must have a mental or physical impairment that substantially limits one or more of a person's major life activities.
    "Major life activities" include functions such as caring for one's self, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning, and working. When a condition does not substantially limit a major life activity, the individual does not qualify under Section 504.

  • The child's disability must impact their education in order to qualify for educational accommodations.

This determination is made by a school team of individuals who are familiar with the child and the child's parent.


If the school has reason to believe that, because of a disability as defined under Section 504, a student needs accommodations or services in order to participate in the school program, the school must evaluate the student. If it is determined that a student is disabled under Section 504, the school must develop and implement the delivery of all needed services and/or accommodations.

What Does Making Accommodations Mean?

Accommodations are adjustments made by the classroom teacher(s) and other school staff to help students benefit from their educational program. In some cases a plan should be developed outlining services and accommodations.

Examples of Common Accommodations:

  • Modify assignments and tests.

  • Provide an extra set of textbooks for home.

  • Adjust student seating.

  • Use study guides/organizing tools.

  • Provide a peer tutor/helper.

  • Provide school counseling.

  • Have the student use an organizer – train in organizational skills.

  • Provide preferential seating.

  • Modify recess/PE/transportation.

  • Use necessary health care procedures.

Section 504 Referrals:

Each school district must have standards and procedures in place for the evaluation and placement of students in the district’s Section 504 program. Districts must also implement a system of procedural safeguards that includes notice, an opportunity for a parent or guardian to examine relevant records, an impartial hearing with an opportunity for participation by the parent or guardian and representation by counsel, and a review procedure.

Contact Person for Section 504 Referrals:

The designated person to contact regarding options for a student experiencing learning difficulties or regarding a referral for evaluation for Section 504 services is:

Contact Person: Dr. Megan Pape
Phone Number: 979-865-7012