The US Senate passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES ACT – H.R. 748) yesterday 3/25/2020. For those concerned with special education and civil rights, there is at least one very worrisome part of that act. This is a section that allows the Secretary of Education to submit within 30 days proposed waivers to the IDEA and to Section 504 of the Rehabilitation ACT of 1973. If you are concerned about this you need to call your two Senators and your House member. Look up their numbers here.
“Not later than 30 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary
shall prepare and submit a report to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions and the Committee on Appropriations of the Senate, and the Committee on Education and Labor and the Committee on Appropriations of the House of Representatives, with recommendations on any additional waivers under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (20 U.S.C. 1401 et seq.), the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. 701 et seq.), the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 6301
et seq.), and the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act of 2006 (20 U.S.C. 2301 et seq.) the Secretary believes are necessary to be enacted into law to provide limited flexibility to States and local educational
agencies to meet the needs of students during the emergency involving Federal primary responsibility determined to exist by the President under section 501(b) of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 5191(b)) with respect to the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).”