Special Education Placement Options (2023)

October 22 Code § 14.101 et seq.
22 Pa. §§ 711 Abs. 1 ss. códex

issue date: 1. September 1997
Day of exam: October 2017, October 2009, July 1, 2001 (formerly BEC 22 Pa. Code § 14.2(d))

(Video) 2019 09 Special Education Placement Options


The purpose of this Basic Education Circular (BEC) is to review a variety of special education services and placement options that are available to Local Education Agencies (LEAs) through agreements with other public agencies or private organizations. This BEC will describe the responsibilities of LEAs when deciding to contract with other public or private agencies for the provision of special education and related services. This BEC does not apply to children placed in a residential facility by a state mental health/intellectual disability (MH/ID) program agency, a children and youth agency, or through a local court for non-educational reasons.


The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) (20 U.S.C. Section 1400 et seq.) requires each LEA, including charter schools, to provide a free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) in the Least Restrictive Environment (LRE) and provide a continuum of delivery alternatives for children with disabilities. As part of the Individualized Education Program (IEP) meeting, the IEP team must consider where specific education programs and services are offered. Like the FAPE, the LRE is a determination that must be made on an individual basis. To provide special education programs and services in the LRE, LEAs must ensure that (1) placement is determined by the child's IEP team; (2) that a continuum of location alternatives be discussed; and (3) that a child with a disability will ONLY be taught in a different setting from their non-disabled peers if the nature or severity of the child's disability is such that instruction in regular classes with the use of aids and supplementary services cannot be achieved satisfactorily. In addition to regular and special education classrooms, the continuum of placement alternatives that the IEP team may consider include public or private or other care settings.

The Pennsylvania Special Education Regulations, contained in Chapter 14 and Chapter 711 of Title 22 of the Pennsylvania School Code, describe a variety of special education services and placement options that LEAs may pursue as determined by IEP staff. . The special education programs and services listed in Chapters 14 and 711 may be provided directly by LEAs or through an agreement with another public or private organization. After 22 Pa. Code §14.102 and §711.2, LEAs may enter into agreements for the provision of services to children with disabilities. Recourse to other public agencies or private organizations must be included in the school district's special education plan described in 22 Pa. Code §14.104(b) or in a charter school's annual report described in 22 Pa. Code § 711.6(a )(3). When LEAs choose to use public agencies or private organizations to provide special education programs or services, there are several limiting factors that must be analyzed and addressed prior to such an agreement.

Contracts with private schools, agencies and private organizations

If LEAs choose to contract with another agency, organization, or public or private school to provide all or a portion of the special education program on their behalf, they remain responsible for delivery under Title 22 Pennsylvania School Code §§14.102 and 711.2. in FAPE Consistent with IDEA and Pennsylvania special education regulations contained in Chapter 14 and Chapter 711. Special education programs or services provided under an agreement with a public or private agency or organization must be implemented in accordance with the IEP of the child and in accordance with IDEA and Chapter 14 or Chapter 711 requirements. LEAs remain responsible for ensuring that the implementation of any special educational program or service provided by the public or private agency, organization, or school complies with the IDEA and Chapter 14 or Chapter 711 requirements.

(Video) More Special Ed Placement Choices PLEASE!

Private Academic Schools

The State Board of Private Academic Schools licenses schools that meet the requirements of its regulations. These regulations are found in Title 22 of the Pennsylvania School Code, Sections 51.1, 53.1, 55.1, 57.1, 59.1, 61.1, and 63.1 et seq.

Children with disabilities publicly placed by the LEA in private academic schools are eligible for FAPE as set forth in the applicable IDEA and Pennsylvania special education regulations in Chapter 14 and Chapter 711 of Title 22 of the Pennsylvania School Code. It is the responsibility of LEAs that choose to place a child with a disability in a private academic school as a means of providing FAPE to determine prior to placement whether those specific educational programs or services meet the requirements of IDEA and are compliant with Chapter 14 or Chapter 711 LEAs have a responsibility to ensure that a child receives FAPE in the same manner that he or she would receive it if accepted into a public school. FAPE encompasses not only the special education and related services that a child with a disability receives, but also an appropriate preschool, elementary, and secondary education. Because licensing private academic schools does not guarantee that the school's program, service, or personnel will meet the requirements of IDEA, Chapter 14, or Chapter 711, LEAs cannot rely solely on the license. The minimum personal qualifications required for licensure in private academic schools are different from, and not equivalent to, those required in public schools. Therefore, LEAs that choose to place children with disabilities in private academic schools for the implementation of IEPs are responsible prior to placement for determining whether the private academic school provides special education and related services in accordance with the IEP, including payments. of child support at no cost to parents, and to determine whether special education programs and services meet government standards applicable to private academic schools.

During routine special education cyclical monitoring, LEAs are monitored for the provision of FAPE to children placed in other settings, including other educational institutions operated by public or private organizations and agencies. LEAs are responsible for corrective action as needed, much like a public school placement.

Other private and public agencies and organizations

Individuals in a non-traditional setting providing specialized education programs and services as required by the child's IEP must have active professional teaching certification from the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE), including personal credentials and qualifications that would be required if they offer the service. as an employee of a public school. Since the personnel requirements for private agencies or other public agencies and organizations including private academic schools do not necessarily guarantee this, it is important to recognize that this requirement is the responsibility of LEAs in relation to the individual qualifications of personnel to provide FAPE. for each child to ensure special training is received in other settings prior to placement.

(Video) Educational Placement Options for Students with Disabilities

Number of teacher cases and teacher supervision

Adequate education and supervision must be provided to each child to support FAPE. Title 22 Chapter 14 caseload requirements apply to educational placements for which LEAs make arrangements with a public or private agency, organization, or school that is not an Approved Private School (APS). Workload requirements for APS are specified in Chapter 171.11 et seq. Rules for recognized private schools. Caseload requirements do not apply to charter school children placed with other public or private agencies or organizations.

Relation to special educational standards for the accommodation of individual children

The above discussion relates to the question of what placement options are available to LEAs in making an individual special education placement decision. This discussion does not replace or alter the applicability of the Rules to individual placement decisions. For example, there is an obligation to enroll a child in the LRE where the child's IEP can be implemented; and there is a corresponding prohibition on placing children solely for reasons of administrative convenience. These rules apply regardless of the type of placement being considered. In addition, children placed in a non-traditional placement by the IEP team are entitled to the same procedural requirements that would apply if they attended a public school, including, but not limited to, timelines for IEP reevaluation and - Review, IEP mandatory team membership and restrictions on disciplinary removal from school.

Title 22 of the Pennsylvania School Code provides for intermediate or "nontraditional" placement operated by units only when "such additional classes or schools... classes or schools maintained and operated by school districts..." 24 P.S. §13-1372. LEAs are responsible for ensuring the provision of FAPE in the LRE. Therefore, the use of non-traditional sites, particularly when they are separate and not based on an individual placement decision, will result in rejection of the school district's special education plan or PDE rejection of a charter school's annual report. . 🇧🇷 Rejection of a charter school's annual report by PDE may result in the regulator not renewing the license.


The administrative procedures referred to in IDEA and in Chapters 14 and 711, in cases of suspension, require that the pendency be maintained until the conclusion of the arbitration or arbitration hearing. The child subject to mediation or due process remains at the current educational institution until the mediation or due process is completed. If an LEA has placed a child in another facility, such as B. a public or private agency or organization for the provision of FAPE, and that child becomes involved in mediation or a due process hearing, the child must do so at the time mediation or due process hearing is completed, unless the parent and the LEA agree otherwise. The public or private agency or agency must continue the previous educational placement for the child affected by an administrative proceeding.

(Video) Overview of Special Education Part 2: IEP and Placement Options


purdon statues

24 PS § 13-1372
24 PS §§ 17-1715y ss.

state school regulations

22 Pa. Code Sections 14.101 ff.
22 Pa. Code Sections 711.1 ff.
22 pa. Code §§ 51.1, 53.1, 55.1, 57.1, 59.1, 61.1 and 63.1 et seq.
22 Pa. Code Sections 171.11 ff.

Federal Code

20 USC Section 1400y ss.
34 CFR §§ 300. 114-115

office/office contact

Special Education Secretariat
Pennsylvania Department of Education
Marktstr. 333
Harrisburg, PA 17126-0333
Phone: 717.783.2311

(Video) The Importance of Special Education Placement Decisions


What factors should educators consider when deciding what placement options are appropriate for a child? ›

Thus, the selection of an appropriate placement for your student must take into account the following four factors:
  • The content of your student's IEP;
  • The LRE requirements;
  • The likelihood that the placement option will provide a reasonably high probability of assisting your student to attain her/his annual goals; and.

What is the most restrictive special education placement? ›

Home and Hospital is the most restrictive educational setting. It is provided for students who cannot attend school due to a medically documented medical or mental health reason. It is a temporary placement.

What are the five most frequently used accommodations for students with special needs? ›

Here, I talk about what these accommodations are, how they look in the classroom, and how they can benefit your child or student.
  • Alternative Instruction Format. ...
  • Using Digital Tools. ...
  • Testing Accommodations. ...
  • Taking Breaks. ...
  • Preferential Seating. ...
  • Extra Time for Assignments. ...
  • Study Skills Instruction. ...
  • Sensory Tools.

What is the best classroom arrangement for special education? ›

Set the desks in the classroom is rows, rather than using circular seating around large tables, if possible. Students with autism need their own space. The student with ADHD is easily distracted, so a seat close to the teacher, facing forward works best.

What is a common error made during IEP meetings? ›

A procedural error that may occur at any point during the IEP process is failure to involve parents. The Supreme Court's decisions in Hendrick Hudson Central School District Board of Education v. Rowley (1982) and Endrew F.

What should parents do if they disagree with a placement option? ›

Should the parents disagree with the placement decision, they have recourse to IDEA's procedural safeguards, which include mediation and due process procedures, as a way of resolving the conflict. A parent of a child with a disability can also file a state complaint.

What are 3 educational placements for meeting the needs of students with disabilities? ›

Educational placement options include the general education setting, special education placement, self-contained educational placement, and out-of-district placement.

What type of accommodations are most popular in an IEP? ›

Common examples of accommodations include extended time to complete assignments, provision of notes or outlines, untimed tests, and reduced number of test questions.

Is 504 or IEP stronger? ›

In short, an IEP provides many more procedural protections, and often– but not always– more “direct services” than a 504 plan, but of course that is a highly simplified explanation. Students with both IEPs and 504 Plans have documents from their schools describing their special needs and how the school will meet them.

What are examples of reasonable accommodations? ›

Examples of Reasonable Accommodations

Acquiring or modifying equipment or devices such as adjusting a desk height to accommodate an employee who uses a wheelchair or providing an employee with quadriplegia a mouth stick device to type on their computer.

What are the 4 types of accommodations? ›

Accommodations are typically grouped into four categories: presentation, response, setting, and timing and scheduling.

What are examples of special accommodations? ›

Needed accommodations may include providing:
  • Accessible training sites;
  • Training materials in alternate formats (e.g., large print, Braille, audiotape, or electronic format) to accommodate a disability; and.
  • Sign language interpreters or captioning.

How do you accommodate special needs students in the classroom? ›

See Also
  1. Discover your students' strengths. ...
  2. Provide positive role models with disabilities. ...
  3. Develop strength-based learning strategies. ...
  4. Use assistive technologies and Universal Design for Learning tools. ...
  5. Maximize the Power of your students' social networks. ...
  6. Help students envision positive future careers.
Apr 9, 2013

How to accommodate students with disabilities in the classroom? ›

Assisting Students with Disabilities
  1. Include a Disability Statement on Your Syllabus. ...
  2. Follow the Instructions on the Accommodation Determination Letter. ...
  3. Meet with the Student in Private. ...
  4. Protect Student's Privacy. ...
  5. Provide a Safe and Fair Learning Environment. ...
  6. Use Student Disability Services as a Resource.

Why are IEP meetings so hard? ›

You Feel Forced To Settle

The worst IEP meetings are designed to force you to settle without getting what your child needs. They want you to feel like you need to defer to their judgement and accept that they know what's best for your child.

How do you disagree at an IEP meeting? ›

When You Disagree with the IEP Team
  1. Make sure you state your objections and concerns during the meeting. ...
  2. Record the IEP meeting. ...
  3. Write a letter to the school after the IEP meeting. ...
  4. Talk with the caseload manager or special education teacher and express your concerns.
May 5, 2022

What is the most common assessment error? ›

Perhaps the most common mistake made by assessors is tying a property's real estate value to its purchase or sale price. The conflict between the real world of what an owner pays for a property and the hypothetical world of property tax assessments becomes a constant source of tension.

What happens when parents don't agree with IEP? ›

If you disagree with the IEP, then you need to verbally reject it. Doing this provides the school personnel the chance to rethink the services they are offering. If you still can't reach any kind of resolution after you have given your verbal intent, you have the option to accept or formally reject the IEP.

Do parents have the final say in an IEP? ›

The entire IEP process can feel stressful and overwhelming for parents, but they should keep in mind that they have the final say at all times. They can also meet with the child's teacher or schedule additional IEP meetings to address concerns throughout the school year.

Who makes the final decision in an IEP meeting if a team is unable to reach consensus? ›

If a consensus cannot be reached the school district is ultimately responsible for ensuring that the IEP includes the services the student needs to receive FAPE.

What are special education placement options? ›

Special Education Placement Options

Placement refers to the amount of time in each school day that a student spends in the resource or in a general education classroom. The school district is required to have a range of placements where your child can be taught, including in the general education classroom.

What are the three types of placement? ›

  • Emergency placements. involves caring for children or young people who need somewhere safe to stay immediately, usually for a few nights or weeks.
  • Primary placements. ...
  • Respite placements.

What are the different types of educational placement? ›

Educational placement definition
  • Parental placement.
  • Initial Placement.
  • Community placement.
  • commercial place.
  • Current placement episode.
  • Permanent foster care placement.
  • Intercountry placement.
  • Foster care placement.

What are the 5 common means of reasonable accommodation? ›

What types of accommodations are generally considered reasonable?
  • Change job tasks.
  • Provide reserved parking.
  • Improve accessibility in a work area.
  • Change the presentation of tests and training materials.
  • Provide or adjust a product, equipment, or software.
  • Allow a flexible work schedule.

What accommodations do students with ADHD get? ›

  • Extra time on tests;
  • Instruction and assignments tailored to the child;
  • Positive reinforcement and feedback;
  • Using technology to assist with tasks;
  • Allowing breaks or time to move around;
  • Changes to the environment to limit distraction; and.
  • Extra help with staying organized.

What are examples of accommodations and modifications for students with disabilities? ›

Examples of Accommodations & Modifications
  • General Accommodations: Large print textbooks. Textbooks for at-home use. ...
  • Testing and Assessment Accommodations: Answers to be dictated. ...
  • General Modifications: Allow outlining, instead of writing for an essay or major project. ...
  • Behavior modifications: Breaks between tasks.
Jan 10, 2023

Does ADHD get an IEP or 504? ›

If your child has ADHD and another disability, such as a speech impairment or dyslexia, it's more likely he'll be covered under IDEA. If your child has been denied an IEP, but his ADHD still limits his ability to learn in an educa- tional setting, he may qualify for accommodations or services under Section 504.

Is there a downside to having an IEP? ›

Common IEP Shortcomings:

Sets low expectations and misrepresents the child's educational potential. Does not target the fundamental cognitive, communicative, behavioral, sensory integrative, and social deficits of ASD students. Does not capitalize on characteristic strengths of this population.

Does ADHD give you a 504? ›

Regardless of how well he or she performs in school, a student who has trouble concentrating, reading, thinking, organizing or prioritizing projects, among other important tasks, because of ADHD may have a disability and be protected under Section 504.

What is an example of reasonable accommodation for autism? ›

Accommodations can include modification of work schedule or policy; physical changes to workspace; equipment and devices; job restructuring; adjustment of supervisory methods; and job coaching.

How do you answer a reasonable accommodation request? ›

Dear [Employee name]: On [date], you informed [name and title] of your medical condition and requested a job accommodation to be able to perform your job functions. [Company Name] complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and we want to support you in continuing to perform your job duties.

What kind of accommodations should I ask for? ›

Reasonable accommodations generally fall within three categories: Changes to the application or interview process. Changes to the work environment that enable you to perform the essential functions of your job. Changes that enable you to access the benefits and privileges of employment.

What are 5 accommodations that are offered to students? ›

Common accommodations
  • Presentation accommodations (changes the way information is presented)
  • Response accommodations (changes the way kids complete assignments or tests)
  • Setting accommodations.
  • Timing accommodations.
  • Scheduling accommodations.
  • Organization skills accommodations.
  • Assignment modifications.

Who decides what accommodations students qualify for? ›

How Are Accommodations Selected? After a student's disability has been verified, a DSPS staff person meets with the student discuss what types of accommodations may be needed. The “Accommodations Interivew” is one procedure for helping determine appropriate accommodation strategies.

What is the most common accommodation? ›

Arguably, hotels are the most popular type of accommodation for tourists.

What are the most common accommodations for students? ›

Common Accommodations
  • Braille. ...
  • Breaks as Needed. ...
  • Class Notes. ...
  • Deaf and Hard of Hearing Accommodations. ...
  • Laptop in Class for Taking Notes. ...
  • Preferential Seating. ...
  • Record Class Lecture. ...
  • Testing Accommodations. Testing accommodations (e.g. lower distraction environment, extended time, assistive technology, etc.)

What are examples of IEP modifications? ›

Low-Incidence Accommodations
  • Provide all materials in enlarged font.
  • Provide slant boards or slanted surface.
  • Provide verbal descriptions of visual aids.
  • Use high-contrast materials.
  • Use larger manipulatives.
  • Reduce clutter on the page.
  • Provide a printed copy of what's being presented on the board.
  • Provide preferential seating.

Is ADHD considered an intellectual disability? ›

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental condition. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) recognizes ADHD as a developmental disability.

What are ways a teacher can accommodate a child with special needs? ›

Successful Strategies for Teaching and Supporting Students with Disabilities
  • Lean on others. ...
  • Stay organized. ...
  • Don't reinvent the wheel. ...
  • Know that each student is unique. ...
  • Keep instructions simple. ...
  • Embrace advocacy. ...
  • Create opportunities for success. ...
  • Don't feel pressure to be perfect.

What strategies can teachers use to assist students with special educational needs? ›

Effective Teaching Strategies for Special Education
  • Set clear expectations for all students.
  • Break assignments into smaller pieces to work on in short time periods.
  • Space breaks between assignments so students can refocus on their tasks.
  • Share ideas with parents so they can help with homework.
Apr 6, 2018

What are the three things that we can adapt for students with disabilities? ›

Try these in your classroom, and let us know which adaptations have worked best for your students!
  • Alter the instructional arrangement.
  • Alter the physical or social environment.
  • Alter your methods and materials.
  • Alter the process or task.
  • Alter the level of personal assistance.
Mar 28, 2017

How do you accommodate students with autism? ›

Here are six tips to help your students with autism thrive in the classroom.
  1. Avoid sensory overload. Many unexpected things can be distracting to students with autism. ...
  2. Use visuals. ...
  3. Be predictable. ...
  4. Keep language concrete. ...
  5. Directly teach social skills. ...
  6. Treat students as individuals.
Mar 15, 2016

What are special programs activities best for children with learning disabilities? ›

There are umpteen extracurricular and out-of-school activities that can help children with learning disabilities succeed beyond the regular learning environment.
  • Theatre/drama. ...
  • Learn by doing. ...
  • Interactive learning. ...
  • Personalised learning. ...
  • Voluntary work:
Oct 30, 2018

What is the difference between an IEP modification and accommodation? ›

One type of support is an accommodation, which is a change that helps a student overcome or work around the disability. A modification, which is a change in what is being taught to or expected from the student, is another type of support a student with an IEP may receive.

What are the factors that must be considered before the placement of a child in a least restrictive environment? ›

Consider whether the student's annual goals and short term objectives appropriately meet the academic, social, emotional, physical and career needs of the student. Consider the student's needs for interaction with non-disabled peers.

What factors should be considered in choosing an appropriate assessment? ›

There are four considerations to examine when designing an appropriate assessment method that will reflect the established learning goals and activities:
  • Reliability.
  • Standardization.
  • Validity.
  • Practicality.

What would the 3 most important factors be when deciding on a university placement? ›

If you're shopping around for colleges, you're going to want to consider a broad range of factors, such as location, size, cost, academic quality, campus safety, choice of majors, as well as other factors that are important to you personally.

Who decides on placement in the least restrictive environment? ›

Who Decides Placement?
  • the child's parents;
  • personnel who know the variety of placement options available to meet the child's needs, and.
  • individuals who understand the significance of the data used to develop the child's IEP. [§300.116(a)]

What are some factors that should not influence special education placement? ›

The district may not make placement decisions based solely on factors such as the following: category of disability; severity of disability; configuration of delivery systems; availability of educational or related services; availability of space; or administrative convenience.

What is the most important feature when selecting an assessment? ›

The most important criteria to use when selecting or building an assessment is identifying the purpose of the assessment.

What are the three considerations for choosing an assessment method? ›

Assessment Method Considerations
  • Face Validity/Applicant Reactions.
  • Subgroup Differences.
  • Utility/Return on Investment.
  • Validity.

What are the 3 types of seating plans? ›

Discover 8 types of seating arrangements all event professionals need to know:
  • Chevron. Chevron style seating offers two columns of short, angled rows with an aisleway down the middle. ...
  • Auditorium. ...
  • Banquet. ...
  • Boardroom. ...
  • Cabaret. ...
  • Classroom. ...
  • Hollow square. ...
  • U-shaped.

What are the five different arrangement styles in a classroom? ›

Arrangement patterns
  • Traditional (students facing the instructor)
  • Stadium Seating (or Angled Rows with Desks Touching)
  • Modified U (or Horseshoe)
  • Groups (or Pods, Teams)
  • Combination (desks in various positions)
  • Roundtable (students and instructors facing the center)


1. Continuum of Placement
(Special Education Academy™)
2. Placement (Components of special and Inclusive education)
(Ege, Miegen)
3. Educational Placement Options
(Lily Murch)
4. LRE & Continuum of Placement Options
(MECA Consulting & Advocacy )
5. Least Restrictive Environment In Special Education | Special Education Decoded
(Special Education Resource)
6. The Placement Continuum (Special Education) & the Least Restrictive Environment (LRE)
(Our Special Village)


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