DOE Rescinds Guidance Documents Related to Idea and Rehabilitation Act

by Franczek Radelet P.C.

Franczek Radelet P.C.[author: John Swinney]

On February 24, 2017, President Trump signed Executive Order 13777. This order required Federal agencies to evaluate their existing regulations and make recommendations to the agency head regarding their repeal, replacement, or modification. In conformity with this Order, on October 20, 2017, the Department of Education (“DOE”) released a list of guidance documents related to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (“IDEA”) and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 that have been rescinded due to being outdated, unnecessary, or ineffective.

The DOE began its review by tasking the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (“OSERS”) and the Rehabilitation Services Administration (“RSA”) with assessing guidance on the IDEA and the Rehabilitation Act. As a result of this review, the DOE has rescinded 72 guidance documents. The list includes 63 documents by OSERS related to IDEA and 9 by the RSA related to the Rehabilitation Act. The majority of the rescinded guidance documents were originally issued in the 1990s and 2000s; the most recent is from 2014.  

Reviewing the guidance related to the IDEA, the rescinded documents fall into several categories. Those categories include:

  • Guidance letters, such as Q&A and Dear Colleague Letters, that have been superseded.
  • Memos regarding grant requirements that are no longer relevant due to newer guidance.
  • Information regarding time sensitive programs that have since lapsed or been discontinued.
  • Transmittal memos issued in advance of new policies or laws—such as pre-IDEA transitional guidance.

Below are examples of recent IDEA guidance documents that are no longer in effect:






OSEP Dear Colleague Letter on LEA Maintenance Effort


Superseded by LEA Maintenance of Effort regulations


Final Regulations Related to Parental Consent for the Use of Public Benefits or Insurance


No longer needed. Used when rolling out [2013] Regulations


OSEP Dear Colleague Letter: Preschool Least Restrictive Environment (LRE)


Superseded by 2016 Dear Colleague Letter


Guidance on Procedural Safeguards and Due Process Procedures for Parents and Children with Disabilities


Superseded by 2013 Dispute Resolution Q&A


Q&A on Highly Qualified Teachers Serving Children with Disabilities


Outdated due to ESSA changes


Q&A on Serving Children with Disabilities Placed by Their Parents at Private Schools


Superseded by 2011 Q&A Document

Although these guidance documents are no longer valid, the IDEA and Rehabilitation Act, which they aimed to explain, are still in effect and must be followed. Further, the Department of Education does not anticipate that elimination of any of these guidance documents will result in changes to policies or services under the IDEA or the Rehabilitation Act. Department of Education Press Secretary Liz Hill explained that “Students with disabilities and their advocates will see no impact on services provided.”

The Department will continue to review its regulations and make determinations as to those that may be outdated. Indeed, on October 27, the DOE released a list of nearly 600 out-of-date pieces of subregulatory guidance it will withdraw. The list includes documents from the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education and Office of Postsecondary Education in addition to the OSERS guidance described herein. The release of this list marks the end of phase one for the DOE in its effort to comply with Executive Order 13777. Questions regarding the now outdated documents or general compliance with the IDEA and Rehabilitation Act should be directed to your legal counsel. As always, we will keep you up to date with proposed and implemented changes as the information becomes available.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Franczek Radelet P.C. | Attorney Advertising

Written by:

Franczek Radelet P.C.

Franczek Radelet P.C. on:

Readers' Choice 2017
Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:
Sign up using*

Already signed up? Log in here

*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.
Custom Email Digest
Privacy Policy (Updated: October 8, 2015):

JD Supra provides users with access to its legal industry publishing services (the "Service") through its website (the "Website") as well as through other sources. Our policies with regard to data collection and use of personal information of users of the Service, regardless of the manner in which users access the Service, and visitors to the Website are set forth in this statement ("Policy"). By using the Service, you signify your acceptance of this Policy.

Information Collection and Use by JD Supra

JD Supra collects users' names, companies, titles, e-mail address and industry. JD Supra also tracks the pages that users visit, logs IP addresses and aggregates non-personally identifiable user data and browser type. This data is gathered using cookies and other technologies.

The information and data collected is used to authenticate users and to send notifications relating to the Service, including email alerts to which users have subscribed; to manage the Service and Website, to improve the Service and to customize the user's experience. This information is also provided to the authors of the content to give them insight into their readership and help them to improve their content, so that it is most useful for our users.

JD Supra does not sell, rent or otherwise provide your details to third parties, other than to the authors of the content on JD Supra.

If you prefer not to enable cookies, you may change your browser settings to disable cookies; however, please note that rejecting cookies while visiting the Website may result in certain parts of the Website not operating correctly or as efficiently as if cookies were allowed.

Email Choice/Opt-out

Users who opt in to receive emails may choose to no longer receive e-mail updates and newsletters by selecting the "opt-out of future email" option in the email they receive from JD Supra or in their JD Supra account management screen.


JD Supra takes reasonable precautions to insure that user information is kept private. We restrict access to user information to those individuals who reasonably need access to perform their job functions, such as our third party email service, customer service personnel and technical staff. However, please note that no method of transmitting or storing data is completely secure and we cannot guarantee the security of user information. Unauthorized entry or use, hardware or software failure, and other factors may compromise the security of user information at any time.

If you have reason to believe that your interaction with us is no longer secure, you must immediately notify us of the problem by contacting us at In the unlikely event that we believe that the security of your user information in our possession or control may have been compromised, we may seek to notify you of that development and, if so, will endeavor to do so as promptly as practicable under the circumstances.

Sharing and Disclosure of Information JD Supra Collects

Except as otherwise described in this privacy statement, JD Supra will not disclose personal information to any third party unless we believe that disclosure is necessary to: (1) comply with applicable laws; (2) respond to governmental inquiries or requests; (3) comply with valid legal process; (4) protect the rights, privacy, safety or property of JD Supra, users of the Service, Website visitors or the public; (5) permit us to pursue available remedies or limit the damages that we may sustain; and (6) enforce our Terms & Conditions of Use.

In the event there is a change in the corporate structure of JD Supra such as, but not limited to, merger, consolidation, sale, liquidation or transfer of substantial assets, JD Supra may, in its sole discretion, transfer, sell or assign information collected on and through the Service to one or more affiliated or unaffiliated third parties.

Links to Other Websites

This Website and the Service may contain links to other websites. The operator of such other websites may collect information about you, including through cookies or other technologies. If you are using the Service through the Website and link to another site, you will leave the Website and this Policy will not apply to your use of and activity on those other sites. We encourage you to read the legal notices posted on those sites, including their privacy policies. We shall have no responsibility or liability for your visitation to, and the data collection and use practices of, such other sites. This Policy applies solely to the information collected in connection with your use of this Website and does not apply to any practices conducted offline or in connection with any other websites.

Changes in Our Privacy Policy

We reserve the right to change this Policy at any time. Please refer to the date at the top of this page to determine when this Policy was last revised. Any changes to our privacy policy will become effective upon posting of the revised policy on the Website. By continuing to use the Service or Website following such changes, you will be deemed to have agreed to such changes. If you do not agree with the terms of this Policy, as it may be amended from time to time, in whole or part, please do not continue using the Service or the Website.

Contacting JD Supra

If you have any questions about this privacy statement, the practices of this site, your dealings with this Web site, or if you would like to change any of the information you have provided to us, please contact us at:

- hide
*With LinkedIn, you don't need to create a separate login to manage your free JD Supra account, and we can make suggestions based on your needs and interests. We will not post anything on LinkedIn in your name. Or, sign up using your email address.