What is Section 504?

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act is a civil rights law that is designed to prevent disability prevention in programs and activities that receive federal funds, such as a public school district.

Under Section 504, no qualified student with a disability shall, on the basis of disability, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or otherwise be subjected to discrimination under any district program, including nonacademic services and extracurricular activities.  

Section 504 differs from the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) in that is purpose is to prevent discrimination against disabled students.  Alternatively, IDEA provides special education services to students with specific categories of disabilities beyond what is provided to students without disabilities.