Special Education
April 05, 2005

Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004

Download: Complete Bulletin. PDF file.


On November 19, 2004, Congress passed legislation to reauthorize the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). President Bush signed the Act into law December 3, 2004. This legislation may be cited as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004. It culminates three years of development starting with public forums held by the United States Department of Education in 2001 to the recent negotiations between the House and Senate Conference Committee to reconcile differences between the House and Senate versions of their IDEA bills.

All changes are effective July 1, 2005 except the definition of "highly qualified" as aligned to the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). This section of the legislation is effective on the date of its enactment, as well as certain provisions of Part D, relating to funding for personnel preparation. This bulletin provides a summary of the most significant changes of the IDEA and implications for NYSUT members and schools.

The United States Department of Education will amend federal IDEA regulations to conform to the Act within a year of the Act's enactment. It is anticipated that these amendments will serve to clarify several statutory changes as noted, herein. The Act requires the U.S. Secretary of Education to issue regulations "only to the extent necessary to ensure there is compliance with the specific requirements of the statute." In addition, New York State will need to amend its special education statutes and regulations to conform to the Act. The full text of the IDEA is available on line at http://edworkforce.house.gov.


Download: Complete Bulletin. PDF file.

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