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Tuesday's Tip: 5 IEP Curriculum # 1-Core & #2 - Extracurricular

The Individualized Education Program (IEP) address more than just reading, writing and mathematics. Our purpose of the IEP is to come up with a plan that will allow the scholar to access all of their education. That means that the accommodations and modifications that can be associated with an IEP must also address nonacademic issues that can hinder learning for a scholar. Today's focus is on academics and the general education curriculum. In addition, we will address extracurricular, recreational, and leisure skills that provide a fuller more satisfying lifestyle for your scholar.

The 5 Curriculums we will address are:

1) General Education Curriculum

2) Extracurricular and non-academic activity skills as well as recreation and leisure skills

3) Expanded curriculum / Disability specific curriculums /and independent functional skills across environments

4) Assistive technology devices/ services and curriculum

5) Behavioral curriculum

General Education Curriculum

The General Education Curriculum is one of only 5 Curriculums that may be included in the IEP.

The general education curriculum is the State Department of Education or School District approved subject matter provided to scholars without disabilities. It covers basic intellectual competencies, concepts, skills and specified scholar outcomes for scholars without disabilities. These are items scholars are expected to develop and independently apply, rather than a list of specific courses and course content.

  • Areas of educational curriculum often include:

  • Language Arts

  • Mathematics

  • Natural Sciences

  • History

  • Humanities

  • Visual and Performing Arts

  • Social and Behavioral Sciences

These curriculums are often on the school districts or states websites for review, for each grade. They address broad and multiple perspectives on the scholar's relationship to the larger society and world and help the scholar understand the responsibilities of living in a culturally and ethnically diversified world. It includes objectives to:

  1. Develop a capacity to use knowledge

  2. Develop aesthetic judgments

  3. Develop ethical behaviors

  4. Integrate knowledge

  5. Recognize the importance of maintaining health and wellness

  6. Understand how technology and science affects their lives

  7. Understand political, economic, and social aspects of life

  8. Understand the interrelationships of the academic disciplines

  9. Understand ways in which to be a responsible member of society, and

  10. Use of logical reasoning in problem solving.

The goal of all IEPs in reference to the General Curriculum to address the closing of the educational gap between the baselines of the scholar with a disability and their peers. It does NOT matter how severe their disabilities are because through differentiated instruction in a "general curriculum" class a scholar with a disability can be included.

Extracurricular and Nonacademic Activity Curriculum

Extracurricular activities and nonacademic activities are school activities that are not part of the general curriculum.

  • After-school programs

  • Assemblies

  • Band or choir

  • Field trips

  • Lunch, recess

  • School clubs

  • School dances /parties

  • School sports

    • Tryouts, practice or games

  • Health accommodations or medication management while the student participates.

Check your IEP and make sure that it specifies the following:

  • Discuss what other modifications have to be provided?

  • Document how and when the scholar will be involved.

  • Is it listed under areas of NEED – socialization skills

  • Is the scholar's involvement required in order for the scholar to receive FAPE

  • Scholars are entitled only to the same opportunities as their peers without disabilities.

  • Scholars with disabilities have the right to try out but they must meet the essential requirements for the team or activity and are not guaranteed participation.

  • Supervising staff members in activities should be involved in the decision-making at the IEP meeting but decisions are made by the IEP team - not the coach alone.

IDEA 2004

An IEP must include a statement of the special education and related services, and supplementary aids and services to be provided to the scholar and a statement of the program modifications or supports for school personnel that will be provided for the scholar to be involved in and make progress in the general education curriculum and to participate in extracurricular and other nonacademic activities. 20 USC § 1414(d)(1)(A)(i)(IV)(bb); and 34 CFR § 300.320(a)(4)(ii).

FAPE- FREE APPROPRIATE PUBLIC EDUCATION - state eligibility for federal funding:

  • Each public agency must take steps, including the provision of supplementary aids and services determined appropriate and necessary by the scholar's IEP team, to provide nonacademic and extracurricular services and activities in the manner necessary to afford scholars with disabilities an equal opportunity for participation in those services and activities.

  • Nonacademic and extracurricular services and activities may include:

    • Counseling services,

    • Athletics,

    • Transportation,

    • Health services,

    • Recreational activities,

    • Special interest groups or clubs sponsored by the public agency,

    • Referrals to agencies that provide assistance to scholars with disabilities, and

    • Employment of scholars, including both employment by the public agency and assistance in making outside employment available. 107


In providing or arranging for the provision of nonacademic and extracurricular services and activities, including meals, recess periods, and the services and activities set forth in § 300.107, each public agency must ensure that each scholar with a disability participates with scholars without disabilities in the extracurricular services and activities to the maximum extent appropriate to the needs of that scholar. The public agency must ensure that each scholar with a disability has the supplementary aids and services determined by the scholar's IEP Team to be appropriate and necessary for the scholar to participate in nonacademic settings. 300.117,


Nonacademic services. (a) General. (1) A recipient to which this subpart applies shall provide non-academic and extracurricular services and activities in such manner as is necessary to afford scholars with disabilities students an equal opportunity for participation in such services and activities.

34 CFR § 104.37

Physical education and athletics.

  • In providing physical education courses and athletics and similar aid, benefits, or services to any of its scholars, a recipient to which this subpart applies may not discriminate on the basis of handicap. A recipient that offers physical education courses or that operates or sponsors interscholastic, club, or intramural athletics shall provide to qualified scholar with a disability an equal opportunity for participation. 34 CFR § 104.37(c)(1)

  • A recipient may offer to scholars with disabilities physical education and athletic activities that are separate or different from those offered to scholars without disabilities only if separation or differentiation is consistent with the requirements of § 104.34 and only if no qualified scholars with disabilities is denied the opportunity to compete for teams or to participate in courses that are not separate or different. 34 CFR § 104.37(c)(2)

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