If a child has a hearing loss, but does not qualify for special education services, certain laws still may apply to the student. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) are Federal laws that ensure access to general education programs and activities for individuals with disabilities.
A Federal law that governs education services for all students is The Elementary and Secondary Education Act, also known as No Child Left Behind (NCLB). NCLB is targeted at improving the academic achievement of the disadvantaged, including students with disabilities, and requires that students with disabilities must perform at the same standards as those set for non-disabled students. In Texas, the current standard used to measure student performance is the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) and the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) test. Schools that do not make progress must provide supplemental services, such as free tutoring or after-school assistance; take corrective actions; and, if still not making adequate yearly progress after five years, make dramatic changes to the way the school is run. There is often overlap between the various laws related to special education, general education and disability rights.
NCLB also includes requirements related to the qualification of teachers. Many teachers are required to be "highly qualified" if they teach a "core academic subject". This requirement has resulted in some teachers needing additional training and has caused challenges for some teachers who are certified in special/deaf education, since they may not have an academic area of specialty (math, science, etc..) but rather have special knowledge, training and expertise in special/deaf education.