Need Help?

Call AFC's Education Helpline
(866) 427-6033
Monday to Thursday
10 am to 4 pm 

Josh’s Story

Josh came to AFC when he was 20 years old because he was desperate to learn how to read.

Stay connected

Sign up for AFC's email updates and find other ways to take action.

Get Help

Guides & Resources: Students with Disabilities and Special Education

Students with Disabilities and Special Education

Returning visitors to our resource library: If you have downloaded a publication before, we recommend clearing your browsing history before clicking the links below, to ensure you are viewing the most up-to-date versions. 

Note: Unless otherwise noted, all resources are in PDF format and will open in a new window. To view PDF files, download the following free software: Get Adobe® Reader®. If you are unable to access PDFs, please call our Helpline (866-427-6033) or email info@afcnyc.org, and we will be happy to provide the information in an alternative format.

Special Education in New York City Schools

Please visit our page on early childhood education for resources on preschool special education and the transition to kindergarten. Visit our page on older students and transition for resources related to the transition to adulthood.

Applying to Middle School and High School for Students with IEPs and 504 Plans 
En Español: Solicitar a las escuelas intermedias y secundarias para los alumnos con lEPs o planes de la Sección 504

Arranging Transportation Services
En Español: Cómo Obtener Servicios de Transporte

COVID Compensatory Services Fact Sheet
En Español: Servicios compensatorios por COVID

Guide to Special Education
En Español: Guía de AFC sobre Educación Especial
Also available in: ArabicBengaliChinese

Guide to Special Education Impartial Hearings
En Español: Guía de AFC sobre Audiencias Imparciales sobre Educación Especial

High School Graduation Options for Students with Disabilities
En Español: Opciones de graduación de la escuela secundaria para estudiantes con discapacidades
Also available in: Chinese, Korean

Referring Students for Special Education 

Requesting an Impartial Hearing for Extended School Eligibility for Students with Disabilities 

Special Education Evaluations 

Special Education Information in My Language: Translation and Interpretation Tip Sheet
En Español: Información Sobre Educación Especial en Mi Idioma 
Also available in:
 ArabicBengaliChineseFrenchHaitian CreoleKoreanRussianUrdu

Special Education Process: Initial Referral, Evaluation, and Recommendation
En Español: Referido inicial, Evaluación y Proceso de Recomendación

Special Education Recovery Services
En Español: Servicios de recuperación de educación especial
Also available in Arabic, BengaliChinese, French, Haitian Creole, KoreanRussian, Urdu

Start of School 2022-23 Questions & Answers for Families of Students with Disabilities 
En Español: Preguntas y Respuestas Sobre el Comienzo de Clases

Assistive Technology (AT)

The ARISE Coalition (coordinated by Advocates for Children) provides additional resources related to assistive technology.

Guide to Assistive Technology
En Español: Guía de AFC para Tecnología Asistencial

WebinarAssistive Technology  


Please visit our page on school discipline for additional resources related to behavior challenges.

Frequently Asked Questions: Families of Students with Behavioral, Emotional, or Mental Health Challenges at School

Guide to Manifestation Determination Review (MDR): Protections for students with disabilities who face discipline
En Español: Guía de los AFC para la Revisión de Determinación de la Manifestación (MDR): Protecciones para estudiantes con discapacidades que enfrentan problemas de disciplina

Positive Interventions for Students with Disabilities: Functional Behavioral Assessments (FBAs) and Behavior Intervention Plans (BIPs)
En Español: Intervenciones Positivas para Estudiantes con Discapacidades

School Visits and IEP Meetings

Tip Sheet: Preparing for an Individualized Education Program (IEP) Meeting 
En Español: Cómo Prepararse para una Reunión del IEP
Also available in: ArabicBengaliChineseHaitian Creole

Worksheet: Preparing for an IEP Meeting
En Español: Cómo Preparase para la Reunión del IEP
Also available in: Arabic, Bengali, Chinese

Podcast: Preparing for an IEP Meeting
En Español: Cómo Prepararse para una Reunión del IEP

Preparing Students with Disabilities for Emergencies at School 
En Español: Preparativos para Emergencias Escolares para Estudiantes con Discapacidades

What to Ask During a School Visit 
En Español: Qué preguntar durante una visita a la escuela
Also available in: ArabicBengaliChineseHaitian Creole

Section 504

Guide to Section 504

Section 504 Fact Sheet

Special Populations

English Language Learners and Special Education
En Español: Estudiantes Aprendiendo Inglés y Educación Especial
Also available in: ArabicBengaliChineseFrenchHaitian CreoleRussianUrdu

Guide to Autism Spectrum Disorders and Education
En Español: Educación y Trastornos del Espectro Autista

Guide to Gifted & Talented Programs for Students with Disabilities
En Español: Guía de AFC sobre Programas de Estudiantes con Aptitudes y Talentos Avanzados para Estudiantes con Discapacidades

Questions & Answers about Literacy and Dyslexia 
En Español: Preguntas y Respuestas sobre la Alfabetización y la Dislexia
Abridged version available in: ArabicFrench

Rights of Students with Disabilities in Charter Schools
En Español: Derechos de los Estudiantes con Discapacidades en las Escuelas Chárter

Other Services for Children and Youth with Disabilities

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) Fact Sheet
En Español: Seguro de Ingreso Suplementario