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OSEP Spotlight


Watch #RethinkDiscipline: Addressing Disparities in School Discipline
Watch OSERS Assistant Secretary Michael Yudin, U.S. Department of Education, doing a live discussion with experts and practitioners regarding disparities in school discipline on March 16, 2016 3:30 pm EDT.

Panelists will discuss disparities in school discipline and ways to eliminate those disparities by addressing implicit bias, and implementing restorative justice strategies.

Assistant Secretary Yudin will be joined by:

  • Dr. Kent McIntosh | University of Oregon
  • Robert Spicer | Restorative Strategies 
  • Pamela Odom | Principal, Grant Middle School 

Please watch the March 16th discussion at 3:30 pm EDT, at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9KWDdoJJLDw

New Equity in IDEA, Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM)
The nation's special education law, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) aims to ensure fairness in the identification, placement, and discipline of students with disabilities. Yet disparities persist. Students of color remain more likely to be identified as having a disability and face harsher discipline than their white classmates. The U.S. Department of Education took a critical step towards addressing these widespread disparities in the treatment of students of color with disabilities by proposing a new Equity in IDEA Rule. This NPRM has a comment period that ends in 75 days (05/16/2016).

 Read and comment on the Equity in IDEA NPRM in the Federal Register

 Download the Equity in IDEA NPRM (PDF, 532KB)

 Read the NPRM Press Release

New Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Special Education
A Multi-Year Disproportionality Analysis by State, Analysis Category, and Race/Ethnicity

This report provides a set of tables showing the number and percentage of school districts that would be identified with significant disproportionality if ED's example risk ratio thresholds were adopted by all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

 Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Special Education (PDF, 3.1MB)


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.

Twitter logo #IDEA40


Questions and Answers Regarding Inclusion of English Learners with Disabilities in English Language Proficiency Assessments and Title III Annual Measurable Achievement Objectives.
This guidance document is on the inclusion of English Learners (ELs) with disabilities in English language proficiency (ELP) assessments under Titles I and III of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended (ESEA). These are assessments designed to measure the progress of ELs in attaining English language proficiency. The Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE) administers the ESEA and the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) administers Part B of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). OESE and OSERS are issuing the guidance to help states and LEAs understand how Part B of the IDEA and Titles I and III of the ESEA address the inclusion of ELs with disabilities in annual state ELP assessments. The 2014 guidance was amended by the 2015 Addendum.

  • July 2015 Addendum
    PDF (216KB)  

  • July 2014 Cover Letter:
    Word (203KB) | PDF (216KB)

  • July 2014 Q&A:
    Word (250KB) | PDF (94KB)



Earlier Spotlight Items


About OSEP

The Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) is dedicated to improving results for infants, toddlers, children and youth with disabilities ages birth through 21 by providing leadership and financial support to assist states and local districts.

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act of 2004 (IDEA) authorizes formula grants to states and discretionary grants to institutions of higher education and other non-profit organizations to support research, demonstrations, technical assistance and dissemination, technology and personnel development and parent-training and information centers.


Last Modified: 03/10/2016