Services for Students with Disabilities


The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) officially defines speech and language impairments as “a communication disorder such as stuttering, impaired articulation, a language impairment, or a voice impairment that adversely affects a child’s educational performance.” Each point within this official definition represents a speech and language subcategory. “A communication disorder such as stuttering” provides an example of a fluency disorder; other fluency issues include unusual word repetition and hesitant speech. “Impaired articulation” indicates impairments in which a child experiences challenges in pronouncing specific sounds. “A language impairment” can entail difficulty comprehending words properly, expressing oneself and listening to others. Finally, “a voice impairment” involves difficulty voicing words; for instance, throat issues may cause an abnormally soft voice.