“Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504) is a civil rights statute which prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities.”
Section 504 provides: "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 . . . ."
“The Section 504 regulations require a school district to provide a "free appropriate public education" (FAPE) to each qualified student with a disability who is in the school district's jurisdiction, regardless of the nature or severity of the disability.”
“Section 504 covers qualified students with disabilities who attend schools receiving Federal financial assistance. To be protected under Section 504, a student must be determined to: (1) have a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities; or (2) have a record of such an impairment; or (3) be regarded as having such an impairment. Section 504 requires that school districts provide a free appropriate public education (FAPE) to qualified students in their jurisdictions who have a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.”
(U.S. Dept of Education: http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/504faq.html#introduction) Section 504 Accommodation plans are a responsibility of the general education program and requires participation from the general education staff. A referral for a 504 evaluation can be made by the student, parent/guardian, teacher or other school staff.