This post was published on 10/07/2019.
One of every five Americans has a disability. A person may be born with a disability, may acquire a disability through an accident or illness, or may acquire a disability simply as part of growing older. Despite the fact that disability is a natural part of life, people with disabilities have not always had access to equal opportunities. Not until 1975, with the passage of the federal Education for All Handicapped Children Act (now known as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act), did school-aged children with disabilities have a right to a free and appropriate education. In order to increase awareness, Section 1003.4205 of Florida Statutes, entitled Disability History and Awareness Instruction, was signed into law in 2008. It requires school districts to designate the first two weeks of October as Disability History and Awareness Weeks and also promotes providing instruction for students in all public schools to expand student knowledge, understanding, and awareness of individuals with disabilities, disability history, and the disability rights movement.
Pasco County Schools encourages instruction on disability history, people with disabilities, and the disability rights movement, especially during the first two weeks of October, but also throughout the school year, and encourages other institutions to conduct and promote educational activities on those subjects.
View the official proclamation here.