The federal Individuals With Disabilities Education Act, known as IDEA, ensures that services are provided for children with special needs. A complex law, it says that children should be served in the least restrictive environment. The school must prepare an individualized education program for students whose special needs are covered under IDEA. The law also requires states to provide intervention services for babies and toddlers with identified special needs.

See more special education terms, or click the links at the top for a full list of education terms.