Crwod of people seated listening closely at a meeting

US Special Education and Disability Laws and Information

Section 504, Rehabilitation Act of 1973 – basic protection against discrimination

US Education Department on Section 504 – on protections for discrimination in education

US Department of Education IDEA Resource Site

IDEA Annual Report to Congress 2021 – where the rubber hits the road

Department of Education Seclusion and Restraint Site – there are lots of problems and it  is widely underreported.

Department of Education Seclusion and Restraint Policy Site

Department of Education Civil Rights Data Collection – data down to the school level… here’s Palo Alto Unified

Wrightslaw – Special Education Law and Advocacy

California Education and Disability Information

Lanterman Developmental Disabilities Act a pioneering piece of disability legislation that was passed in 1978 as a follow on to an earlier 1969.

California Annual Special Education Reports under IDEA – for each school district. These aren’t pretty or easily usable

California School Dashboard – you can get information on Students with Disabilities (IEPs / Protected under IDEA), no data on students with 504 plans. As of 2022, the last data for which detailed academic and other data is provided is 2019 before COVID. Mostly demographic data more recently.

California Dataquest site – more California Education databases!

Department of Education Civil Rights Data Collection – data down to the school level… here’s Palo Alto Unified

SF Bay Area Disability and Special Education Resources

Palo Alto Special Needs Moms – Facebook Group

Palo Alto CAC

Palo Alto Special Education (PAUSD) – the school district special education department

Stanford Autism Center – at Stanford Children’s Health is dedicated to providing specialized clinical services and advancing research in Autism Spectrum Disorder.

Stanford Neurodiversity Project 

Parents Helping Parents


Santa Clara Office of Education SELPA (Special Education Local Plan Area)

San Andreas Regional Center

Decoding Dyslexia Peninsula Mail listmoc.liamgobfsctd@alusninephtronacdd

Down Syndrome Connection Bay Area

CHADD of Northern California – Children and Adults with AD/HD

Other California Disability Resources

Lanterman Coalition – a pioneering California organization protecting the rights of those with developmental and intellectual disabilities.

Decoding Dyslexia (California) – We strive to raise dyslexia awareness, empower families to support their children, and improve resources for students with dyslexia in California public schools.

Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund (DREDF) – is a leading national civil rights law and policy center directed by individuals with disabilities and parents who have children with disabilities. (Note – based in Berkeley, CA)

Disability Rights California (DRC) is the agency designated under federal law to protect and advocate for the rights of Californians with disabilities.

The State Council on Developmental Disabilities (SCDD) is established by state and federal law as an independent state agency to ensure that people with developmental disabilities and their families receive the services and support they need.

Department of Developmental Services

Other Local Resources

CuriOdyssey – great hands-on science museum and zoo that has “Super Families” days for families with disabled children.

Friendship Circle – great programs for disabled kids here in Palo Alto

Barron Park Donkeys – for kids who like animals

Burgess Pool – public pool in Menlo Park. Open more of the year than our Palo Alto public pool

Other Disability Resources

Why doesn’t all Dyslexia look the same? – an excellent slide deck discussing the different types of Dyslexia as well as information about special education (IEPs and 504 plans).

SF Bay Area School District Education Metrics

My plan is to add metrics for all of the school districts in the SF Bay Area. I’ve started with mine, but if you would like me to add yours sooner rather than later, let me know: moc.eriwaidemytilibasidobfsctd@evets.

  • Real High School Diplomas for All Students

    While it is great seeing so many parents here fighting for access to higher mathematics, I’m here asking for Palo Alto Unified School District (PAUSD) to bother to teach my son to add. There are around 60 to 90 specific common core standards for each grade in elementary school which get turned into the 30…

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  • Palo Alto’s 504 Plan Puzzle

    Palo Alto Unified School District’s 504 Plan demographics are substantially different than California’s or the rest of the US states with around 7% of our students having a 504 plan (see attachments) vs. the national average of 2.7%, California at 4% and the highest state average New Hampshire at 6.2% (tab 2 of “Enrollment-Overall”) Thank…

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  • Segregated Special Education in Palo Alto – a long way to go

    “when students are included, they have more access to the general curriculumand effective instruction, they achieve at higher rates of academicperformance, and they acquire better social and behavioral outcomes.” According to the latest report under IDEA for Palo Alto, 7.75% of students spend less than 40% oftheir day in general education (reports from 2021). Compared…

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