Decision requires RI to provide adult special education

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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A federal court has ruled that the Rhode Island Board of Education must provide free special education to students with disabilities until they turn 22.

The Providence Journal reports the Monday ruling by the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals held that the state had failed to comply with the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. States are required to provide "free, appropriate public education."

A lawsuit argued that the state had discriminated against students by providing adult education programs for students who aren't disabled, while failing to offer free education to students with disabilities.

According to the plaintiff's lawyer, about 1,600 students are affected by the legal decision.

A spokeswoman for the Rhode Island Department of Education says the department is reviewing the decision.


Information from: The Providence Journal,

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