Kristi Kafka

Nationally Certified School Psychologist

Home Accommodation 504 Plan

Special Education


South Dakota's Eligibility Categories




Hearing Loss

Cognitive Disability

Multiple Disabilities

Orthopedic Impairment

Other Health Impaired

Emotional Disturbance

Specific Learning Disability

Speech/Language Impairment (articulation, fluency, voice, language)

Traumatic Brain Injury

Vision Loss

Developmental Delay

Source:  Determining Eligibility for Special Education in South Dakota:  A Technical Assistance document. 

For full document:


Qualification is three-pronged

  1. Student must be identified as having a disabilityAND

  2. The disability adversely effects educational performance, demonstrating a need for services.  (Some disabilities do not interfere with day-to-day functioning or educational performance; therefore, deeming special education services unnecessary.);  AND

  3. The disability and adverse effect result in a need for specially designed instruction.

For more information see the State Department of Education Website


History - Federal Legislation


1975 The Education of All Handicapped Children Act of 1975 - Original legislation assuring free appropriate education for all "handicapped" children.  Emphasized special education and related services designed to meet individual students' needs.  Also assured protection of child and parents' rights.  Also known as Public Law 94-142.
1990 IDEA - Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.  Changed name of previous legislation and changed term from handicap to disability.
1997 IDEA reauthorized, breaking it into four parts.  Parts B &C are most often referred to in Special Education.  Part B refers to special education services for children aged 3-21.  Part C refers to early intervention services for infants and toddlers

Source:  Jacob, S., Hartshorne, T. S.  (2003).  Ethics and Law for School Psychologists, 4th Ed.  Hoboken: New Jersey, John Wiley & Sons.



For accurate, reliable information about special education law, education law, and advocacy for children with disabilities -

Educator and Parent Primer on Special Education -