It is the intent of the Legislature that special education programs provide all of the following:
(a) Each individual with exceptional needs is assured an education appropriate to his or her needs in publicly supported programs through completion of his or her prescribed course of study or until the time that he or she has met proficiency standards prescribed.
(b) Early educational opportunities shall be available to all children between the ages of three and five years who require special education and services.
(c) Early educational opportunities shall be made available to children younger than three years of age pursuant to Chapter 4.4 (commencing with Section 56425), appropriate sections of this part, and the California Early Intervention Services Act (Title 14 (commencing with Section 95000) of the Government Code).
(d) Any child younger than three years of age, potentially eligible for special education, shall be afforded the protections provided pursuant to the California Early Intervention Services Act (Title 14 (commencing with Section 95000) of the Government Code) and Section 1439 of Title 20 of the United States Code and implementing regulations.
(e) Each individual with exceptional needs shall have his or her educational goals, objectives, and special education and related services specified in a written individualized education program.
(f) Education programs are provided under an approved local plan for special education that sets forth the elements of the programs in accordance with this part. This plan for special education shall be developed cooperatively with input from the community advisory committee and appropriate representation from special and regular teachers and administrators selected by the groups they represent to ensure effective participation and communication.
(g) Individuals with exceptional needs are offered special assistance programs that promote maximum interaction with the general school population in a manner that is appropriate to the needs of both, taking into consideration, for hard-of-hearing or deaf children, the individual's needs for a sufficient number of age and language mode peers and for special education teachers who are proficient in the individual's primary language mode.
(h) Pupils are transferred out of special education programs when special education services are no longer needed.
(i) The unnecessary use of labels is avoided in providing special education and related services for individuals with exceptional needs.
(j) Procedures and materials for assessment and placement of individuals with exceptional needs shall be selected and administered so as not to be racially, culturally, or sexually discriminatory. No single assessment instrument shall be the sole criterion for determining the placement of a pupil. The procedures and materials for assessment and placement shall be in the individual's mode of communication. Procedures and materials for use with pupils of limited-English proficiency, as defined in subdivision (m) of Section 52163 and in paragraph (18) of Section 1401 of Title 20 of the United States Code, shall be in the individual's native language, as defined in paragraph (20) of Section 1401 of Title 20 of the United States Code. All assessment materials and procedures shall be selected and administered pursuant to Section 56320.
(k) Educational programs are coordinated with other public and private agencies, including preschools, child development programs, nonpublic nonsectarian schools, regional occupational centers and programs, and postsecondary and adult programs for individuals with exceptional needs.
(l) Psychological and health services for individuals with exceptional needs shall be available to each schoolsite.
(m) Continuous evaluation of the effectiveness of these special education programs by the local educational agencies shall be made to ensure the highest quality educational offerings.
(n) Appropriate qualified staff are employed, consistent with credentialing requirements, to fulfill the responsibilities of the local plan and positive efforts are made to employ qualified disabled individuals.
(o) Regular and special education personnel are adequately prepared to provide educational instruction and services to individuals with exceptional needs.
(Amended by Stats. 2005, Ch. 653, Sec. 2.)
20 USC 1401
20 USC 1439
Education Code 52163
Education Code 56320
Education Code 56425
Government Code 95000