Preparing Students with Disabilities for College Realities

High school students with disabilities must understand their rights under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) (which guarantee the civil rights of persons with disabilities) and how these differ from the rights and services they received under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

Requirements for high school diplomas may be changed under IDEA. For example, dependent on their particular disabilities, some students' programs of study under IDEA may not include certain language, mathematics, or science courses that are usually required courses for a diploma. 

 Under the ADA standards for the class cannot be compromised; however, institutions must provide reasonable modifications, accommodations, or auxiliary aids which will enable qualified students to have access to, participate in, and benefit from the full range of the educational programs and activities which are offered to all students on campus. Examples, which may assist students with learning disabilities, include but are not limited to:

  • Use of reader, scribe for exams
  • Extra time to complete exams
  • Print material in alternate format (E-Text, Braille, Enlarged)
  • Note taker in the classroom