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(4.51) Can my school district be required to purchase equipment needed to implement my child’s IEP?

(4.51) Can my school district be required to purchase equipment needed to implement my child’s IEP?

Yes. Districts must provide equipment needed to implement your child’s IEP. State law provides money to school districts to purchase equipment required in the IEP for students with low-incidence disabilities (for example, Braille equipment for blind students or communication devices for students with oral language impairments). Schools are also required to purchase equipment needed to provide related services such as occupational and physical therapy equipment. [Cal. Gov. Code Sec. 7575(d); Cal. Ed. Code Secs. 56363.1 & 56836.22.]

In addition, federal law requires that districts ensure that assistive technology devices and/or services are available to special education students who need them as part of:

  1. Their special education and/or related services; or
  2. The supplemental aids and services used to assist students in being placed in the least restrictive environment. [34 C.F.R. Sec. 300.105.]

An assistive technology device is any item, piece of equipment, or product system, whether acquired commercially off the shelf, modified, or customized, that is used to increase, maintain, or improve the functional capabilities of children with disabilities. [34 C.F.R. Sec. 300.5.] Assistive technology services include evaluation for and purchasing, modifying or repairing of such a device, and training necessary for the student and others to use it effectively. [34 C.F.R. Sec. 300.6.] See Chapter 5, Information on Related Services.