Kern County Consortium SELPA

Least Restrictive Environment (LRE)

Defining Least Restrictive Environment

Inclusive education is best defined by membership. Included students with IEPs are supported members of age-appropriate general education classes and programs in their home school communities. They receive specialized instruction, related services, and/or supplementary aids and services to enable involvement and progress in the general education curriculum (34 CFR Part 300 1, p. 12470; 20 USC 141[1][A][iii])


  • required by Federal and State Law
  • where students with disabilities have the opportunity to attend their home schools
  • an individualized determination of the appropriate placement that is made by the IEP team, including the student as appropriate
  • consideration of the full array of services to meet individual student needs, including supplementary aids and services provided in the general classroom
  • placement of students with disabilities with peers of the same chronological age
  • bringing supports and services to students where they need them 9e.g., in general education classes or in community vocational settings, etc.)
  • educating students in general education classrooms with appropriate supports and services
  • providing access to all areas of the general education curriculum
  • collaboration and shared responsibility among general and special educators, administrators, parents, and students with disabilities


  • an option
  • educating students with disabilities without considering their home school
  • considering only one placement option within the array of services
  • making IEP teams choose between needed services and a preferred appropriate placement
  • “putting” students in general education classrooms without appropriate supports
  • providing a separate, unrelated curriculum to the general education curriculum
  • special educators assuming sole responsibility for students with disabilities

Inclusive Education Guidelines

Resources on LRE:

Building Instructional Capacity and Skill of Educators

School culture and leadership that supports LRE

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