Public Law 94-142, The Education for All Handicapped Children Act of 1975, considered by many to be the most significant federal legislation for children in need of special education, was proposed for deregulation by the Reagan administration in 1982. This study examines actions taken by citizen advocates-consumer/advocacy/parent (CAP) organizations and groups, parents, and other advocates for exceptional children-who gave testimony in opposition to the proposed changes at public hearings held by the United States Department of Education in late 1982. The most controversial proposed rules were withdrawn on September 29, 1982, while the remaining proposed changes were not implemented. Citizen advocates' overwhelming presence at the hearings and their other activities were instrumental in defeating the administration's efforts at deregulation.

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