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Individuals with Disabilities Education Act

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) is the federal law that protects the right of children with disabilities to an education and outlines which categories of disability qualify children for its protections. It is one of the most sweeping laws protecting children with disabilities and mandates a variety of legal rights for children with qualifying disabilities, including the right to a free appropriate public education (FAPE) designed to meet their unique needs and prepare them for further education, employment, and independent living.

This law is classified as an entitlement law, meaning that everyone who fits into its eligibility requirements is entitled to the services mandated under the law. The evolving language of the IDEA over time reflects the growing social importance of acknowledging people first ...

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