"Section 504" refers to the section of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 which guarantees certain rights to individuals with disabilities. The Rehabilitation Act defined a disabled person as someone who has a physical or mental impairment, a record of an impairment, or is regarded as having an impairment. This federal law states that no person "... shall, solely by reason of her or his disability, be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance".
The mere fact that a student has a "record of" or is "regarded as" disabled is insufficient, in itself, to trigger protection under Section 504. The presence of an impairment does not automatically mean that the student has a disability or that it impacts functioning in the school setting. The central and most controlling consideration is whether the specified impairment substantially limits the specified major life activity - which in the school setting is learning.
To be protected under Section 504, a student must be determined to 1) have a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, 2) have a record of such an impairment, or 3) be regarded as having such an impairment.
The Section 504/Title II Compliance Coordinator for OPRFHS District 200 is Daniela Lukic-Cole - DLukicCole@oprfhs.org