Procedural Requirements for Disciplining Students with Disabilities

$34.99 each

Allan G. Osborne, Jr. and Charles J. Russo (April 2014)


Paperback, 80 pages


Monograph No. 88


ISBN-10: 1-56534-160-0


ISBN 13: 978-1-56534-160-9


One of the more contentious issues under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) involves the discipline of students with disabilities.  Written by a retired school administrator and a school law professor with a law degree, this monograph touches on the practical aspects of following the IDEA’s mandates, as well as the legal requirements. Five sections cover: 1) general disciplinary requirements applicable to all students; 2) statutes governing the education of students with disabilities; 3) case law that led to the inclusion of disciplinary provisions in the IDEA; 4) procedural requirements the IDEA requires school disciplinarians to employ with students with disabilities; and, 5) recommendations for practitioners. The purpose of the monograph is to give educators and their attorneys the information necessary to help them make legally correct decisions.


Table of Contents

I. Introduction

General Disciplinary Requirements

Application to Students with Disabilities

II. Relevant Statutes

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act

Americans with Disabilities Act

State Laws

III. Significant Judicial Precedent

Early Lower Court Litigation

U.S. Supreme Court – Honig v. Doe

Post-Honig Litigation

IV. Current IDEA Disciplinary Procedures

Authority and Responsibilities of School Personnel

Case by Case Determination


Transfer to Interim Alternative Educational Setting

  Weapon, Drug, and Alcohol Violations        

  Infliction of Serious Bodily Harm 

Other Disciplinary Changes in Placement

Expulsions and Long-term Suspensions


  Provision of Services

Other Customary Disciplinary Measures


          Time Out and In-school Suspensions

          Modified or Reduced Day Schedule

          Corporal Punishment

Functional Behavioral Assessments and Behavioral Intervention Plans

Manifestation Determinations

Definition of Manifestation

Making Manifestation Determinations

  Personnel Making Manifestation Determinations

  Decisions Manifestation Teams Must Make

  OCR Guidelines


Manifestation Decision-Making Guidelines


Hearing Officer Authority

Placement During Appeals

Injunctions to Exclude Dangerous Students

Rights of Students Not Yet Identified as Having Disabilities

Effect on Law Enforcement and the Courts

V. Summary, Conclusions, and Recommendations for Practice

Appendix: The IDEA’s Statutory and Regulatory Provisions Regarding Discipline