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Department of Special Education/Section 504

Cherokee County School District offers comprehensive special education services to eligible students ages three through 21 years. Children from birth to age three with disabilities will be referred to appropriate agencies for services. All referrals are considered confidential, and services are provided at no cost. The parent, legal guardian, or surrogate parent retains the right to refuse services and is provided other procedural safeguards under federal and state law.

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 is a civil rights (anti-discrimination) statute that prohibits discrimination/harassment on the basis of a disability in any program or activity  receiving federal financial assistance. It also provides that students with disabilities receive a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE). In particular, Section 504 provides that:

No otherwise qualified individual with a disability in the United States...shall, solely by reason of her or his disability, be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving federal financial assistance....

Who is eligible for protections under Section 504?

A student is “disabled” under the Section 504 regulations if the student has a physical or mental impairment which substantially limits one or more major life activities.

The Physical or Mental Impairment

The Section 504 regulations provide a broad definition of the “physical or mental impairment.” Physical or mental impairment means

(A) any physiological disorder or condition, cosmetic disfigurement, or anatomical loss affecting one or more of the following body systems: neurological; musculoskeletal; special sense organs; respiratory, including speech organs; cardiovascular; reproductive, digestive, genito-urinary; hemic and lymphatic; skin; and endocrine; or

(B) any mental or psychological disorder, such as mental retardation, organic brain syndrome, emotional or mental illness, and specific learning disabilities. (34 C.F.R. 104.3(j)(2)).

Age and conditions resulting from cultural, environmental, or economic factors are not considered disabilities under Section 504.

Major Life Activities

Section 504 eligibility looks for impact from the physical or mental impairment on one or more major life activities. Prior to the ADAAA, major life activities included the following:

  •       Caring for oneself
  •       Walking
  •       Seeing
  •       Hearing
  •       Speaking
  •       Breathing
  •       Learning
  •       Working
  •       Performing manual tasks
  •       Eating
  •       Standing
  •       Listing
  •       Bending
  •       Reading
  •       Concentrating
  •      Thinking
  •       Sleeping         

Special Education Records Requests

Parents and Students

Parents of current or former minor CCSD students and CCSD current or former students who are 18 or older may request special education records from the Department of Special Education.  Requests must be made in writing. Please call 770.721.8506 or email your requests to sped.records@cherokeek12.net

Requests must include parental consent or the consent of the student, if the student is aged 18 or older, to release confidential records, if the requester is not the parent or student.

Records can be emailed, sent via US Mail, or picked up in person by appointment only.

Requests should be directed to:

Special Education Records Clerk  
P.O. Box 769
Canton, GA 30169

Phone: 770.721.8506
FAX: 770.721.6316

Special Education Records Request Form


Attorneys seeking any CCSD records, including Special Education records, must send their request to CCSD's custodian of records.  Please email Barbara.Jacoby@cherokeek12.net or mail requests to: Office of Communications, PO Box 769, Ga. 30169.


Helpful Documents for Parents (new, see attachments)

Individualized Education Plan (IEP)
Related Services
Assistive Technology
Preschool Special Needs Program
Information for Parents
Making Sure Your Preschooler Starts on a Path Towards Graduation
Making Sure Your Elementary School Child Starts On A Path Towards High School Graduation
Making Sure Your Middle School Child Starts On A Path Towards High School Graduation
Making Sure Your High School Student Starts On A Path Towards High School Graduation


Helpful External Links:

For special education information in Georgia:

Georgia Department of Education Special Education Manual:
Implementation Manual

Support, information services and training, and leadership opportunities for families who have children and youth with disabilities:
Parent to Parent Georgia

Education news from around the country:
US Department of Education

Office of Special Education and Rehabilitation Services (OSERS):
US Department of Education OSERS

The Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) is the largest international professional organization dedicated to improving educational outcomes for individuals with exceptionalities, students with disabilities, and/or the gifted.
Council for Exceptional Children

Georgia Association of School Psychologists:

Georgia Council of Administrators of Special Education: