OSEP March 2020 Update


OSEP March 2020 Update

Attached is an email sent by the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) on March 31, 2020 with regard to COVID-19 Information and Resources.  This document includes:



  • Supplemental Fact Sheet: 
    • To be clear: ensuring compliance with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA),
      † Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act (Section 504), and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act should not prevent any school from offering educational programs through distance instruction.
      School districts must provide a free and appropriate public education (FAPE) consistent with the need to protect the health and safety of students with disabilities and those individuals providing education, specialized instruction, and related services to these students. In this unique and ever-changing environment, OCR and OSERS recognize that these exceptional circumstances may affect how all educational and related services and supports are provided, and the Department will offer flexibility where possible. However, school districts must remember that the provision of FAPE may include, as appropriate, special education and related services provided through distance instruction provided virtually, online, or telephonically. 


  • The CARES Act and IDEA:  The CARES Act establishes the $30 billion Education Stabilization Fund, which includes the Governor's Emergency Education Relief Fund, the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund, and the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund.


  • OSEP-Funded TA Center COVID-19 Resources:  

    OSERS’ technical assistance centers are ready to address your questions regarding the IDEA and best practices and alternate models for providing special education and related services, including through distance instruction. For questions pertaining to Part C of IDEA, States should contact their Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center State Contact.  For Part B of IDEA, States should contact the National Center for Systemic Improvement.

Please see the attached document for the full article.

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