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Supreme Court Ruling Increases Scope of Special Education Rights

The United States Supreme Court ruled yesterday, in an 8-0 unanimous decision, to expand the scope of rights for students with disabilities. The decision in Endrew F. v. Douglas County School District, rules that under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), a school must offer an "individualized education program" reasonably calculated to enable a child to make "appropriately ambitious” progress. This historic decision raises the bar for how educational services will be measured for students with disabilities.

IDEA provides that eligible children and youth with disabilities shall receive special education and related services that help children benefit from special education. According to the US Department of Education, music therapy is recognized as a related service under the IDEA. The Endrew ruling will undoubtedly have an impact on the way related services are provided. Details are likely to take some time. AMTA will continue to monitor developments related to the Endrew decision and keep members apprised of any updates.

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