"Prior to the passage of this (the Education of all Handicapped Children) Act, disabled children were routinely excluded from the public school system on the basis of their disability." (Triano, 2000)
Prior to 1974 education of children with disabilities was scarce. If a child was to be given the opportunity to go to school it was often considered to be an act of charity rather than any serious educational endeavor. At that time a child could be excluded on the basis that their disability was considered to be nauseating or depressing to students and teachers. (Triano, 2000) Following the court case of Mills v. Board of Education of the District of Columbia Congress-under the tutelage of President Gerald Ford-signed into legislation Public Law 94-142: The Education of All Handicapped Children Act (will be link to new page), which later was renamed IDEA (The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act) when it was passed in 1975.
Public Law 93-112: Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973
Public Law 110-325: Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990
(will also discuss a brief timeline into ADA and Section 504 with each of those having its own wiki page, this page is meant to be a quick overview of the progression of laws and events leading to today's educational environment for students with multiple disabilities)
Triano, S.L. (2000) Categorical Eligibility for Special Education: The Enshrinement of the Medical Model in Disability Policy. Disabilities Studies Quarterly. 20 (4).
Zettel, J. (1977, March). Public Law 94-142: The Education for All Handicapped Children Act. An Overview of the Federal Law. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, Houston, Texas.