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Special education is specially designed instruction for the child. This means adapting, as appropriate to the needs of an eligible child under this part, the content, methodology, or delivery of instruction (i) to address the unique needs of the child that result from the child’s disability; and (ii) to ensure access of the child to the general curriculum, so that the child can meet the educational standards within the jurisdiction of the public agency that apply to all children.

Specially designed instruction is what makes special education “special.” For example, for a child who is having difficulty learning to read, it may mean an Orton Gillingham approach. If the child has an intellectual disability, learning to read may take time and very intensive instruction.