OSERS: Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services
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New IDEA 40th Anniversary

40 years ago, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) became law.
Secretary Arne Duncan speaks on why that's worth celebrating! #IDEA40

Posted by U.S. Department of Education on Tuesday, December 1, 2015

In November, 2015, we celebrated the 40th anniversary of the passage of Public Law 94-142, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Read about the history of this landmark legislation, exciting events surrounding its anniversary celebration, and new resources to help and support students with disabilities. #IDEA40


Letter to SEAs Regarding Oversight of Federal Funds to Charter Schools
On September 28, 2015, the U.S. Department of Education released a  Dear Colleague Letter to state educational agencies (SEAs) that offers guidance and federal resources on appropriate and effective oversight of public charter schools.


Dear Colleague Letter on Free and Appropriate Public Education (FAPE)
The cornerstone of IDEA is the entitlement of each eligible child with a disability to a free appropriate public education (FAPE) that emphasizes special education and related services designed to meet the child's unique needs. The primary vehicle for providing FAPE is through an appropriately developed individualized education program (IEP) that is based on the individual needs of the child.This policy letter clarifies that IEPs for children with disabilities must be aligned with state academic content standards for the grade in which a child is enrolled.
 PDF | 361KB


New Early Learning Site
The goal for ED's new Early Learning Web site is to help improve the health, social-emotional and cognitive outcomes for all children from birth through 3rd grade, so that all children, particularly those with high needs, are on track for graduating from high school college- and career-ready.


Including Students with Disabilities in High-Quality Preschool
The U.S. Departments of Education and Health and Human Services released a policy statement highlighting the importance of making sure that all young children with disabilities have access to inclusive high-quality early childhood programs. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan announced the new policy statement in Kansas City, Missouri, during the first stop of his back-to-school bus tour.


Yudin Confirmed as OSERS Assistant Secretary
On June 2, 2015, the Senate confirmed Michael Yudin to serve as Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services. He has dedicated his career to advocating for all students to have access to and receive a quality education. His wealth of personal experience and passion for equity have made him a major asset to the Department since he joined ED in 2010. As Assistant Secretary, Yudin will continue his commitment to improving results and outcomes for people with disabilities of all ages.


Local Educational Agency (LEA) Maintenance of Effort (MOE) Final Regulations
On April 28, 2015, the final LEA MOE regulations were published in the Federal Register. The LEA MOE regulations become effective on July 1, 2015. The purpose of the LEA MOE requirement is to ensure that LEAs provide the financial support necessary to make a free appropriate public education (FAPE) available to eligible children with disabilities. The Department identified a need for revisions to the LEA MOE requirements based upon fiscal monitoring, audits and questions from states. Most of the changes clarify the way in which the Department has previously interpreted LEA MOE regulations and consolidate requirements from General Education Provisions Act (GEPA), Education Department General Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) and appropriations language. The final LEA MOE regulations are available on Regulations.gov.


WIOA NPRMs Available for Public Comment
The departments of Education and Labor announced that they are seeking public comment on five Notices of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRMs)—proposing rules that would implement the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA)—through June 15, 2015. Please also see the OSERS Blog for areas in the NPRMs that OSERS is particularly interested in receiving public comment, as well as a Notice of Public Meetings and a presentation on the NPRM’s. There is also an FAQ about the WIOA NPRMsPDF, 348KB)


Dear Colleague Letter on IDEA Dispute Resolution Procedures
This "Dear Colleague" letter provides guidance that states, hearing officers, school districts, school staff, parents and other stakeholders may find helpful in determining how to follow the IDEA dispute resolution procedures.


WIOA NPRMs Available for Public Comment
The departments of Education and Labor today announced that they are seeking public comment on five Notices of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRMs)—proposing rules that would implement the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA)—through June 15, 2015.


WIOA NPRMs Available for Public Inspection
Notices of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRMs) related to the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), were made available for public inspection on the Federal Register Public Inspection Web site on April 2, 2015. See the OSERS Blog for all the details. You can also access Word and PDF versions of the OSERS-related WIOA NPRM documents.


Early Literacy Tools and Resources
The end of third grade is the point at which children transition from learning to read to utilizing reading skills to understand the content of all subject areas. To strengthen third-grade reading proficiency for all students, including students of color and students with disabilities, the My Brother’s Keeper Taskforce has established a dedicated early literacy Web site to provide educators with tools, resources, and a learning community to help them improve reading instruction in their K-3 classrooms.



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Last Modified: 12/07/2015