July 29th, 2021

Bi-Partisan RISE Act Opens New Doors for Students with Disabilities

NCLD and over 40 national disability, civil rights, and education partners announce their support for the passage of the Respond, Innovate, Succeed, and Empower (RISE) Act of 2021 in Congress. The RISE Act (S. 2550 and H.R. 4786) of 2021 is co-sponsored in the Senate by Senator Bob Casey (D-PA), Dr. Bill Cassidy (R-LA), Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Senator Maggie Hassan (D-NH),  Senator Todd Young (R-IN), and Senator Edward Markey (D-MA), and in the House of Representatives by Representatives Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), Larry Bucshon (R-IN), Cathy McMorris-Rodgers (R-WA), Kim Schrier (D-WA), Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Derek Kilmer (D-WA), Joe Morelle (D-NY), Suzan DelBene (D-WA), Jim Langevin (D-RI), Joe Morelle, Joe  Courtney (D-CT) and Katie Porter (D-CA).

Did You Know?


of students with learning disabilities received accommodations in high school, but only 17% received accommodations in postsecondary education.


of students who didn’t receive accommodations in postsecondary education reported that they wished they had.

Between $500-$2500

is the average cost of an evaluation for an individual with a learning disability.

If passed, the RISE Act would improve the process for students who qualify for disability services by requiring colleges to accept a wider variety of forms of documentation, such as an IEP, 504 plan, notice from a doctor, or an evaluation by a psychologist. Currently, the process for students to access accommodations is restrictive due to many colleges only accepting  certain documentation, which has resulted in some students having to pay out-of-pocket for costly new evaluations.

The RISE Act does three important things for students with disabilities:

Accommodations: Requires that colleges accept a student’s IEP, 504 plan, or prior evaluation as sufficient proof of their disability when seeking accommodations.

Training: Authorizes more funding for a technical assistance center, The National Center for College Students with Disabilities (NCCSD), that provides students and families with information about available disability services and offers faculty training and resources on best practices to support students with disabilities

Information: Requires colleges to report on how many students with disabilities are being served, the accommodations provided, and the outcomes for these students.

NCLD looks forward to working with the 117th Congress to push the RISE Act forward but we need your support. 

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Supporting Organizations (Updated 5/16/22):

The Advocacy Institute ⋅ AHEAD ⋅ AIM Institute for Learning and Research ⋅ American Association of People with Disabilities ⋅ American Federation of Teachers ⋅ American Psychological Association ⋅ The Arc of the United States ⋅ Association of University Centers on Disabilities ⋅ Autism Society of America ⋅ Autistic Self Advocacy Network ⋅ Center for Learner Equity  ⋅ Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates ⋅ Council for Exceptional Children ⋅ Decoding Dyslexia Network ⋅ Education Law Center – PA ⋅ Education Reform Now ⋅ Eye to Eye ⋅ Family Center Connection of South Carolina ⋅ Higher Education Consortium for Special Education ⋅ InnovateEDU ⋅ Institute for Higher Education Policy ⋅ Japanese American Citizens League ⋅ Learning Disabilities Association of America ⋅ Missouri Parents Act (MPACT) ⋅ National Alliance on Mental Illness ⋅ National Association of Councils on Developmental Disabilities ⋅ National Association of School Psychologists ⋅ National Association of State Directors of Special Education ⋅ National Center for Parent Leadership, Advocacy, and Community Empowerment (National PLACE) ⋅ National Disability Rights Network ⋅ National Down Syndrome Congress ⋅ National Resource Center on Domestic Violence ⋅ The Parents’ Place of MD PAVE ⋅ RespectAbility ⋅ South Dakota Parent Connection ⋅ SPAN Parent Advocacy Network (SPAN) ⋅ Teacher Education Division of the Council for Exceptional Children ⋅ Teach for America ⋅ Teach Plus⋅ THRIVE Center

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