April 28th, 2020

National Center for Learning Disabilities (NCLD) Calls on Congress to Follow Department of Education Recommendations, Preserve IDEA

WASHINGTON – April 28, 2020 – U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos issued a report to Congress on recommended waivers under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). The Secretary made clear her intent to preserve the core tenets of IDEA and reduce barriers to learning. The only substantive recommendation put forth related to IDEA is a waiver of the initial evaluation timelines and procedures for Part B, particularly for students transitioning from Part C to Part B—and only until health officials deem it safe for professionals to meet with students again in-person, not longer.

“We are encouraged to see the extent to which Secretary DeVos protected IDEA in this report. It is clear that the Department took a careful and deliberate approach to making this recommendation,” said Lindsay Jones, President & CEO of NCLD. “Their comprehensive look at the statute certainly revealed the extensive flexibility that is already available in IDEA. This report reaffirms the concept that children should continue to receive the help they are entitled to, and the obligation to serve them does not diminish, even during a crisis.”

Now, NCLD calls on Congress to follow these recommendations. Congress must work to pass another law in response to COVID-19 that protects IDEA for the 7 million students with disabilities who rely on it and invests substantially in our nation’s schools. 

Our full statement can be found here.


For more information, please contact:

Meghan Whittaker, Director of Policy & Advocacy 

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