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New ED Reaches Settlement with South Carolina Department of Education on Funding for Children with Disabilities
The U.S. Department of Education announced that it reached an agreement (PDF, 189KB) with the South Carolina Department of Education (SCDE), settling the litigation involving the Department's claim of South Carolina's failure to maintain state financial support for state fiscal year 2010 and any future claims for state fiscal years 2011, 2012 and 2013. This settlement will bolster the Department's commitment to ensure compliance with the Individuals with Disabilities in Education Act (IDEA), maintain funding levels in South Carolina, and direct additional funds toward improving results for children with disabilities.


New ED Announces New Pay for Success Grant Competition for Preschool
ED announced the availability of $2.8 million for a Preschool Pay for Success (PFS) Feasibility Pilot grant competition for state, local and tribal governments interested in exploring the feasibility of PFS to expand and improve preschool. The feasibility studies will determine if PFS is a viable and appropriate strategy to implement preschool programs that are high-quality and yield meaningful results, identify a broad range of potential outcome measures, and establish safeguards to protect the rights of children with disabilities. For more information, read a Fact Sheet, visit the Preschool Pay For Success (PFS) Feasibility Pilot Web page, and read an ED Blog post.


New WIOA Final Rules
On August 19, 2016, the U.S. Departments of Labor and Education announced the publication of the final rules to implement the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) (Pub. L. 113-128) in the Federal Register. WIOA is landmark legislation that is designed to strengthen and improve our nation's public workforce system and help get Americans, including youth and those with significant barriers to employment, into high-quality jobs and careers and help employers hire and retain skilled workers.


OSERS Releases Guidance Regarding Education of Children with Disabilities Attending Public Virtual Schools
OSERS has issued guidance in the form of a Dear Colleague Letter (DCL) regarding the requirements in the Individual with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) that apply to public virtual schools. Over the last decade, there has been a proliferation of educational models involving varying degrees of in-person and online instruction and practice. This letter addresses the state's general supervision responsibilities and the applicability of IDEA's child find provisions to children attending public virtual schools. The letter also clarifies the responsibility for the provision of a free appropriate public education (FAPE) to children with disabilities attending public virtual schools.

 Dear Colleague Letter (PDF, 336 KB)

 Blog post: IDEA Opportunities and Challenges in Online Settings


OSERS Releases Guidance to Schools on Ensuring Equity and Providing Behavioral Supports to Students with Disabilities
OSERS issued guidance in the form of a Dear Colleague Letter (DCL) that emphasizes the requirement that schools provide positive behavioral supports to students with disabilities who need them. It also clarifies that the repeated use of disciplinary actions may suggest that children with disabilities may not be receiving appropriate behavioral interventions and supports. When schools fail to consider and provide for needed behavioral supports through the Individualized Education Program (IEP), it is likely to result in children not receiving the free appropriate public education to which they are entitled under federal law. The Dear Colleague Letter, as well as additional resources, can be found on the #RethinkDiscipline Web site.


Obama Administration Announces New Regulations to Strengthen Employment and Training Opportunities for Millions of Americans

The U.S. Departments of Labor and Education announced today the publicly available final rules to implement the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), an historic expansion of opportunity for the nation's job seekers, workers and employers. The regulations deliver on need to modernize the nation's workforce system and represent a more integrated, job-driven approach to support communities and expand job growth.

The final WIOA regulations, along with accompanying resources, are available at the following links:



Note: These versions of the regulations may vary slightly from the published document if minor technical or formatting changes are made during review by the Office of the Federal Register. Only the version published in the Federal Register is the official regulation


ESSA: A New Education Law
"With this bill, we reaffirm that fundamentally American ideal—that every child, regardless of race, income, background, the zip code where they live, deserves the chance to make of their lives what they will."
— President Barack Obama

The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) was signed by President Obama on December 10, 2015, and represents good news for our nation's schools. This bipartisan measure reauthorizes the 50-year-old Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), the nation's national education law and longstanding commitment to equal opportunity for all students, including students with disabilities.


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OSERS is committed to the broad values of inclusion, equity and opportunity for infants, toddlers, children, youth and adults with disabilities to actively participate in all aspects of life. OSERS promotes inclusion, ensures equity and creates opportunity as we strive to improve results and outcomes for children and adults with disabilities.



To provide leadership to achieve full integration and participation in society of people with disabilities by ensuring equal opportunity and access to, and excellence in, education, employment and community living.

In implementing this mission, OSERS supports programs that help educate children and youth with disabilities, provides for the rehabilitation of youth and adults with disabilities and supports research to improve the lives of individuals with disabilities. OSERS provides a wide array of supports to parents and individuals, school districts and states in three main areas—Special Education, Vocational Rehabilitation, and Research—through its two main components: OSEP and RSA.


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Last Modified: 09/07/2016