Senators introduce bill to help special needs students transition to college
WASHINGTON - Louisiana Senator Bill Cassidy and other legislators from across the country have announced a new bill that would ease the burden on students with disablities as they transition to college.
In addition to Senator Cassidy, the RISE Act was also authored by Senators Bob Casey (D-PA), Orrin Hatch (R-UT), and Maggie Hassan (D-NH).
The bipartisan proposal would amend the Higher Education Act (HEA), clarifying that documentation used in K-12 education and other settings to receive special education or accommodations would be acceptable as proof of a disability for students in higher education.
The National Center for Learning Disabilities says the RISE Act closes a loophole that often requires college students with a documented disability to undergo new, costly diagnostic testing in college to be eligible for accommodations. It says the act would allow students to focus on their goals and decrease the financial burden.
“Dyslexics can be as successful as any other student if receiving the curriculum that addresses their learning needs,” Senator Cassidy Said. “We must remove barriers and give the appropriate support.”
Cassidy added that the bill also would also provide additional support for technical assistance to colleges and universities to better serve individuals with disabilities.