States vary widely in the number of students with disabilities who are covered under Section 504, according to an analysis by the Advocacy Institute.
In New Hampshire, for instance, almost 5 percent of students have disabilities that are covered solely by that provision of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, which offers protection to students who have a “physical or mental disability that substantially limits one or more major life activities.” In New Mexico and Wisconsin, that figure is less than half a percent.
The institute relied on federal data on 16,500 school districts. It found that students covered under Section 504 plans are far more likely to be white and male than the general student population.
A version of this article appeared in the September 23, 2015 edition of Education Week as Special Populations