If you are the parent of a child with special education needs, you face unique challenges every day. One of them is ensuring that your child gets a good education. The law ostensibly is on your side in this regard. The Individuals with Disabilities in Education Act states clearly that special needs children are entitled to "free appropriate public education."
A common sense interpretation of that would be that appropriateness be gauged by what results in a child developing and progressing at a rate that is close to what others achieve in the same grade level. But in the decades since the start of FAPE, interpretations have varied greatly – to a point where the question eventually reached the U.S. Supreme Court. And last year the high court issued a unanimous opinion on how it must be construed.