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4. The RISE Act would make it easier for students with disabilities to receive accommodations when they transition to college.

The Respond, Innovate, Succeed and Empower Act (RISE Act)—introduced in December 2016 by Senator Bob Casey (D-PA), Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT), and Senator Bill Cassidy (R-LA)—aims to help students with disabilities succeed in college in two important ways.

First, it would require colleges to accept an IEP or 504 plan as evidence of a disability, which would make it easier and less costly for students to receive accommodations in college.

Second, the RISE Act would provide $10 million to fund the National Center for College Students with Disabilities (NCCSD), which provides information on best practices on how to help students with disabilities succeed as they transition to or attend postsecondary education. This new technical assistance center is designed for prospective and current students with disabilities and their families, as well as teachers and professionals in K–12 and higher education. It will feature:

  • Online tutorials about topics such as accommodations, documentation and disability rights
  • A clearinghouse of articles and other resources on higher education and disability
  • A database of college disability student organizations that will help families know what is available to students at each college