Does a schools obligation to provide AT devices/services mean that the district always pays for them?
Not necessarily. Some devices/services are covered by Medicaid or a family’s insurance. A school cannot compel a family to use their insurance for this purpose, but families may find it beneficial to cooperate with the school to fund or co-fund equipment in this way. For example, if the school purchases the technology, it belongs to the school, but if insurance pays, it belongs to the beneficiary. Medicaid will cover devices/services as long as they can be justified as medically necessary (even though they may be educationally necessary as well). But even when there are alternative or complementary funding sources, the school’s obligation is to see that the student gets what is needed in a timely manner. It is not permissible to delay access to needed technology pending approval of other funding. In such cases, schools may need to explore temporary access solutions (such as a district’s equipment inventory, an equipment loan program, or short-term rental) while waiting for more permane