Special Education Eligibility Extended to Age 22

Students with disabilities will now have an additional year of school-based supports and services to help them prepare for their transition into adulthood. This bi-partisan effort allows students who have not yet earned a regular high school diploma the opportunity to remain in school until the day before they turn twenty-two.

The new law brings New Hampshire into compliance with existing federal law and provides students with more time and flexibility to prepare for, and decide when to, transition from high school into post-secondary education, employment, or other community-based activities.

The law became effective on June 17, 2022.

What about students who left school without earning a regular diploma but are not yet 22?
If a student left high school when they turned twenty-one but wants to return to school and receive school-based supports and services until their twenty-second birthday, they can. Contact the school immediately to re-enroll and request an IEP team meeting as soon as possible to plan services for the summer and/or upcoming school year.

Will staying in school impact area agency services?
No. It is unlawful to deny home and community-based services simply because a student is still in school. Individuals who are eligible for services through an Area Agency may receive those services regardless of whether they are enrolled in school or not. Learn More Here.

If you have questions about the new law or want to learn more about special education rights please visit https://drcnh.org/issue-areas/childrens-issues/education/ or contact our office at (603) 228-0432 or mail@drcnh.org to speak with an attorney free of charge.


About DRCNH

Disability Rights Center – New Hampshire is a statewide non-profit organization dedicated to eliminating barriers for people with disabilities across New Hampshire. DRC is the federally designated protection and advocacy agency for New Hampshire and has authority under federal law to conduct investigations in cases of probable abuse or neglect.


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