Posted on 12/12/2017 at 09:14 AM by Blog Experts

Transportation and Section 504

(Section 504 Compliance Advisor, Vol. 21, Is. 4. June 2017, p. 6)

“Share these tips with your 504 teams:  Consider 3 points for transportation decisions – In general, Section 504 places three obligations on a district in regard to transportation, said Julie Martin, an attorney at Scott Scriven LLP in Columbus, Ohio:  1.  A student with a disability must have the same access to transportation as a similarly situated student without a disability.  Consider what barriers may diminish a student’s access to transportation and determine what accommodations are needed to navigate those barriers…Keep in mind that Section 504 generally prohibits separate transportation services for students with disabilities unless such separation is necessary due to the student’s disability…2. Districts must provide students with disabilities with related aids and services (including transportation) to allow them to participate in and benefit from the educational program in the same manner as similarly situated students without disabilities….3. If a student’s 504 plan offers aids, benefits, or services at a non-district location, the district must provide adequate transportation to and from that location at no greater cost than would be incurred at a district location. 34 CFR 104.33 ©(2).”

Additional guidance, “Assess student’s individual needs – When determining a student’s transportation serices, consider the effects of her disability, Slade said.  Does she have mobility issues that impede access? Is lack of transportation a hardship?...Consider the student’s mental health needs, as well…Determine accommodations on bus – Districts must provide appropriate accommodations on the bus for students served under Section 504, Martin said.  Consider whether the student needs assistance with behavior, medical needs, or another issue to determine necessary accommodations, Slade said…Make sure transportation staff are present at 504 meetings, Slade said. They can help determine appropriate transportation services and provide insight on useful accommodations or implementing medical plans on the bus.”

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