Paths to Literacy

for students who are blind or visually impaired

The History of FAPE: What's the Big Deal?

Date: Wednesday, August 26, 2020
Time: 3:30-4:30 Arizona time (starting at 3:30 Pacific/4:30 Mountain/5:30 Central/6:30 Eastern/12:30 Hawaii/2:30 Alaska)
Cost: $20
CEU: 1 hour professional development credit, ACVREP-certified 

The IDEA’s grant of entitlement to FAPE is built on a rich history of disability and discrimination law, going back to the Civil War, the 14th Amendment, and even the Founding. This session will explore the historical roots of the IDEA and its significance as a civil rights law. We also look at how FAPE has been defined. 


  • Identify the constitutional basis for the IDEA;
  • Describe the connection between racial discrimination court cases and disability discrimination court cases prior to the IDEA;
  • Identify the origins of IDEA terms, especially “free appropriate public education (FAPE)”
  • Compare the definitions of FAPE from Rowley to Endrew F.


Presenter:  Eric A. Bryant

As an Administrative Law Judge from 1997 to 2014, Eric A. Bryant heard and decided IDEA Due Process cases for the State of Arizona.  Many of his decisions are posted on the Arizona Department of Education website. From 2014 to April 2019, Judge Bryant was an ALJ for the Arizona Board of Fingerprinting, reviewing criminal histories and conducting hearings to determine whether or not fingerprint clearance card applicants have been rehabilitated.  He also teaches Special Education Law to teachers, school psychologists, and school administrators in graduate-level courses at Ottawa University – Phoenix Campus, and has been doing so since 2014.  He currently works as a Staff Attorney for the Arizona Court of Appeals, advising and writing draft decisions for the court in the area of Worker’s Compensation Law.

FAPE flyer

Event Date: 

Aug 26, 2020