What is Special Education?

Special education is specially designed instruction, above and beyond what is available in the regular education setting, designed to meet the individual needs of a student with a disability. It is a service, not a place. Special education services are at no cost to parents.

Children who receive special education and related services are entitled to a free and appropriate public education (FAPE). This includes opportunities to participate in the school’s general curriculum and to make progress towards meeting annual goals.  Children who receive special education must have opportunities to take part in other typical school activities that are appropriate to their individual needs.

In Minnesota, schools are required to serve eligible children from birth until the age of 21, or graduation from high school, whichever comes first.

Services are provided by licensed personnel and include special teaching, materials, and techniques.