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Serving Students with Disabilities in Iowa’s Accredited Nonpublic Schools. Iowa Department of Education September 8, 2010. Agenda. Federal law (20 U.S.C. § 1412(a)(10)) Proportionate Share Consultation Process State law (Iowa Code § 256.12) “In the same manner and to the same extent”

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serving students with disabilities in iowa s accredited nonpublic schools

Serving Students with Disabilities in Iowa’s Accredited Nonpublic Schools

Iowa Department of Education

September 8, 2010

  • Federal law (20 U.S.C. § 1412(a)(10))
    • Proportionate Share
    • Consultation Process
  • State law (Iowa Code § 256.12)
    • “In the same manner and to the same extent”
    • Location of Services
  • Making Federal and State law work together
important limitation
Important Limitation

This presentation deals with accredited nonpublic schools only.

Unaccredited “schools”? Home-schooled children?

  • Proportionate share does not apply.
  • “In the same manner and to the same extent” does not apply.
federal law
Federal Law

The IDEA addresses three ways children with disabilities are educated in nonpublic schools.

  • Placed by school districts
  • Placed by parents (equitable participation)
  • Placed by parents, when FAPE is at issue

The difference between the second and third bullet is “provide me services” vs. “write me a check.”

federal law5
Federal Law

Three Key Steps

  • Count the number of kids with disabilities placed by their parents in accredited nonpublic schools.
  • With that number, Determine the “proportionate share” per AEA.
  • Consult with interested parties about using the proportionate share.
federal law consultation process
Federal Law: Consultation Process

Five required topics

  • Child find
  • Proportionate Share
  • Consultation Process
  • Provision of Special Education & Related Services
  • Explanation if nonpublic school officials disagree


Appendix “A”

federal law consultation process7
Federal Law: Consultation Process
  • Consultation at least annually.
  • Consultation at the AEA level.
  • Some items are mechanized for public agencies already by Project EASIER, IMS, and the Special Education Supplement.
consultation process participants
Consultation Process Participants

One consultation process per AEA

Public agency representatives

Nonpublic school representatives (Every private school? May be a good idea, but not required.)

Parents of children with disabilities who attend nonpublic schools.

federal law services
Federal Law: Services
  • Evaluation/child find? Does not count toward proportionate share (includes out-of-district & out-of-state students).
  • Location? Determined by state law (LATER).
  • Type of services? Services must be “secular, neutral, nonideological.”
  • Public school staff? If necessary, and not ordinarily provided by nonpublic school staff.
  • Nonpublic school staff? Outside of regular hours and under AEA supervision/control.
  • Children are entitled to an IEP, not a “services plan.”
federal law services10
Federal Law: Services

“I don’t want an IEP. I want a ‘services plan’ instead.”


“I don’t want an IEP. I want a ‘§ 504 Plan’ instead.”


federal law services11
Federal Law: Services

The consultation process is at the AEA level.

The consultation process concerns support services.

☑special education consultant services

☑educational strategist services ☑audiology

☑occupational therapy ☑physical therapy

☑school psychology ☑school social work

☑special education nursing services

☑speech–language services

federal law funds
Federal Law: Funds
  • Funds may not benefit a private school.
  • Funds/supplies may only be used for special education.
  • Funds/supplies under public agency ownership, supervision, and control
  • No permanent improvements to the nonpublic school site.
  • 1 year carry-over for unspent funds.
federal law data
Federal Law: Data

Report annually

  • The number of children evaluated.
  • The number of children determined eligible.
  • The number of children who receive services funded by Part B.
procedural requirements safeguards
Procedural Requirements & Safeguards

Affirmation of consultation or documentation of consultation (file with DE by June 30 of each year).

Appeal regarding consultation process.

State complaints & due process hearings regarding services.

FORM: Appendix B

FORM: Appendix C

state law
State Law

Special education services provided “in the same manner and to the same extent” in accredited nonpublic schools as public schools. Iowa Code § 256.12(2)

“In the same manner and to the same extent” is a floor and a ceiling. No more and no less.

→Services must be required by an IEP.

→Secular, neutral, and nonideological.

location of services pt 1
Location of Services, pt. 1

There are four types of services that are provided on the nonpublic school’s site, with the nonpublic school’s permission.

  • Health services
  • Special education support and related services provided by area education agencies for the purpose of identifying children with disabilities
  • Assistance with physical and communications needs of students with physical disabilities
  • Services of an educational interpreter
location of services pt 2
Location of Services, pt. 2
  • All other services may be provided on the premises of an accredited nonpublic school

―at the discretion of the school district or area education agency

― with the permission of the lawful custodian of the property

  • Public agency discretion must not be abused. John T. v. Marion Indep. Sch. Dist., 173 F.3d 684 (8th Cir. 1999). Public agencies must not frustrate the purpose of § 256.12.
a tale of two students
A tale of two students



Has an IEP because of physical disabilities. Her IEP calls for, among other things, a daylong 1:1 aide to assist with instruction.

CSD and AEA propose providing the 1:1 aide at the school Sharon would attend.

Sharon’s parents and nonpublic school staff insist on on-site services.

  • Has an IEP with goals and services for speech and reading.
  • CSD and AEA propose providing speech services and reading at the school Steve would attend.
  • Steve’s parents and nonpublic school staff insist on on-site services.
seven steps under 256 12
“Seven Steps” Under § 256.12

1. Is the child an eligible individual?

2. Is the nonpublic school accredited?

3. What services are called for in the child’s IEP?

4. What does § 256.12 say about location of services?

5. For instructional services, the AEA assigns a weight to the child.

6. Ensure any services provided are provided in accordance with the law: “secular, neutral, and nonideological,” etc.

7. For LEA services under 256.12, submit a claim for actual costs to the DE by August 1 of the following school year.

confidentiality federal law requires this
ConfidentialityFederal law requires this.

“If a child is enrolled, or is going to enroll in a private school that is not located in the LEA of the parent's residence, parental consent must be obtained before any personally identifiable information about the child is released between officials in the LEA where the private school is located and officials in the LEA of the parent's residence.”

FORM: Appendix D

federal state law putting the pieces together
Federal & State LawPutting the Pieces Together

Both require an IEP. Both require secular services.

Federal Law

Proportionate Share

Support Services

State Law


Remainder of Support Services

Instructional Services

de contacts
DE Contacts
  • Thomas Mayes


  • Sharon Hawthorne


  • Steve Crew