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Supreme Court To Hear Special Education Case

The Supreme Court agreed Thursday to decide what standard of education schools must provide to students with disabilities.

The case presents the court with the difficult task of determining whether school districts receiving federal funds must offer a “substantial” education or merely make an effort to educate children under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, originally passed in 1990.

The law requires that students with disabilities receive “a free appropriate public education” through an individualized education program, or IEP, designed for each student. About 6.5 million such programs are written each year, but federal appeals courts are divided on the level of education that must be provided.