Section 504 is part of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. It is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination of students on the basis of a handicapping condition.
Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 requires that:
"No otherwise qualified individual with a disability in the United States...shall, solely by reason of her or his disability, be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance. " U.S. Department of Education.
Section 504 is different from the Exceptional Children’s Program in that the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) has a defined list of disabilities that may qualify under IDEA. Section 504 is much broader in that it has no list. Each potentially qualifying disability must be assessed individually. A student qualifying to be served by Section 504 is one that has:
- a physical or mental impairment which substantially limits one or more major life activities,
- a record of such impairment, or
- is regarded as having such an impairment.
Section 504 is enforced by the Office of Civil Rights. (from NCDPI)
Please contact your school's Section 504 Coordinator or the Director of Student & Family Services.
To learn more about Section 504, visit the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction's Section 504 Information Page.