The April Dunn Act is the new name for Act 833. It allows the IEP team to decide on an individual set of performance criteria for a student to meet graduation requirements.
It can allow some students who struggle with state assessments to meet the graduation requirements with their own criteria instead of having to pass the LEAP 2025 assessments.
Your child can qualify for this in 9th grade, depending on their LEAP scores from 6th, 7th and 8th grades.
Performance criteria are the goals and objectives for learning the material in a certain course. For core courses like English and algebra, the LEAP assessments show if a student has met the criteria. For a student using April Dunn, their IEP will list their individual goals and objectives, and they can use those to show they've met the criteria.
A student must qualify, and then work with the IEP team to set it up.
To qualify, students must meet one of these criteria:
For students at the beginning of 9th-grade: Did not meet the required scores on state assessments (LEAP 2025) in two out of three of the middle school years (6th, 7th and 8th grade).
For high schoolers who've already taken a high-school level LEAP assessment: Did not meet the required scores after 2 tries taking the high school level LEAP 2025.
Students who qualify can work with their IEP team to decide on their own set of criteria. It's usually best for a student to know early in 9th grade if they qualify for the April Dunn Act.
If your child does not pass 2 out of 3 of the LEAP tests in middle school, talk to your IEP team at the beginning of 9th grade and ask if they qualify for April Dunn.
This is confusing and complicated! Ask your IEP team if you have any concerns or if you think your child may qualify.
Resources from the LA Dept. of Education:
- April Dunn Act - Parents Guide
- April Dunn Act - Emma and the University Graduation Pathway (Case Study Example)
- April Dunn Act FAQs
- April Dunn Act: An Alternate Means to Graduation for Students with Disabilities
Note: Act 833 was renamed the April Dunn Act in June of 2020 to honor April Dunn, a long-time advocate for people with disabilities. April’s tireless work, among other things, helped to pass Act 833 in 2014.
Source: Louisiana Department of Education