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Placement -- The "Where" of Least Restrictive Environment

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Definition:

Placement is a critical part of the IEP, as it states where a child will receive special education services. Placement is established in the NOREP, the Notice of Recommended Education Placement, which is a document attached to the IEP that must be signed by the parent or guardian every year.

Least Restrictive Environment (LRE) is a legal concept established by the Individuals with Disabilities Act. It states, simply, that the default placement must always be the neighborhood school with general education students in a general education classroom unless the specific needs, disabilities or challenges specific to a child make a more restrictive placement necessary. These placements would be from least to most restrictive: full inclusion, resource room, self contained classroom, special school placement and finally residential treatment school.

Examples:
At Randy's IEP meeting, his mother pushed for his placement to change. She felt that he should receive his reading instruction in the classroom, rather than walking down the hall to the resource room for the convenience of the special education teacher.
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