OSERS: Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services
   Current Section

Archived 2005 News from OSEP
Archived Information

blue flag bullet Secretary's "Tool Kit" Provides Guidance on Assessing Students with Disabilities
Earlier this year, Secretary Margaret Spellings announced a new policy designed to help states better ensure the achievement of students with disabilities. That policy allows states to develop modified achievement standards and use assessments aligned with those modified standards for a group of students with disabilities who can make progress toward, but may not reach, grade-level achievement standards in the same time frame as other students. The Department has provided details on this policy through a notice of proposed rulemaking, which is being published in the Federal Register this week. In advance of the official notice in the Federal Register, an unofficial version of the notice is accessible on the Department's Web site at At the same Web address are guidance, grant information and technical assistance resources to help in assessing students with disabilities.
(December 14, 2005)

blue flag bullet Spellings Hails 30th Anniversary of IDEA Special Education Law
U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings released a statement on today's 30th anniversary of former President Gerald Ford signing on Nov. 29, 1975, the Education for All Handicapped Children Act, now known as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.
(November 29, 2005)

blue flag bullet 30th Anniversary of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act — An Overview
As part of the celebration of the 30th anniversary of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), OSERS would like to share the following overview on the history and accomplishments of the IDEA.

Download the IDEA 30th Anniversary Overview:
download files MS Word (43K) | PDF (18K)

(November 29, 2005)

blue flag bullet Recognizing 30th Anniversary of IDEA, OSERS Assistant Secretary John Hager and Deputy Assistant Secretary Troy Justesen Appear in Department Television Program.
To download a clip from the program, go to A transcript of the clip is available at Excerpt Transcript.
(November 23, 2005)

blue flag bullet OSEP Acting Director Justesen Announces A Series of Topic Briefs Regarding the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004 (IDEA).
In response to public inquiry about the recently reauthorized Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004 (IDEA), and prior to issuing final regulations, OSERS is taking steps to assist in the explanation of the statutory language. To be as responsive as possible to families, educators and administrators, OSERS has developed and posted to its Web site a series of topic briefs regarding several high-interest areas of IDEA 2004. These topic briefs include a summary of all relevant statutory language for 19 topics ranging from Highly Qualified Teachers to Discipline, with citations from the law and cross-references, when applicable, to related briefs.
(October 12, 2005)

blue flag bullet Letter to Parent Center Directors Regarding Special Education Services for Children Affected by the Gulf Hurricanes.
OSEP Acting Director Troy R. Justesen urges Parent Training and Information Centers and Community Parent Resource Centers to be proactive in meeting the needs of children with disabilities and their families.
(October 11, 2005)

blue flag bullet Department Releases Guidance for 1 Percent of Students with Most Significant Cognitive Disabilities.
On August 9th, the Department of Education released new non-regulatory guidance on alternate assessments based on alternate achievement standards for the 1 percent of students with the most significant cognitive disabilities. This guidance is now posted at It is among the items to be included in a "Tool Kit" of information and resources that we will be providing states to help them improve instruction, curricula and assessments for students with disabilities.

Download additional information in a letter from OSERS Assistant Secretary John Hager:
download files MS Word (84K) | PDF (17K)

(August 11, 2005)

blue flag bullet June 14-15: OSEP's National Leadership Summit on Improving Results for Youth.
The goal of this event is to convene state-level teams of policymakers to examine the progress made in the implementation of the strategic action plans developed at the 2003 summit, and to further build state/territory capacity to improve high school experiences that lead to successful postschool outcomes for all youth. As a result of participating in the 2005 summit, state leadership teams will:

  • Revisit and revise state strategic action plans for stronger accountability, which leads to improved results for youth with disabilities;
  • Learn how other states are addressing academic achievement, secondary and postsecondary education completion, and gainful employment;
  • Engage in strategies for more collaborative interagency relationships for improved post school results;
  • Suggest federal and national action for improved secondary education and transition results; and
  • Promote effective evidence-based practices that lead to successful adult outcomes for youth.

Click here to register and learn more about the National Leadership Summit on Improving Results for Youth.

bullet Proposed IDEA Regulations
The U.S. Department of Education has announced proposed regulations to implement the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004 (IDEA 2004 ) and invited public comment. The official copy of these proposed regulations will be published in the Federal Register within a few days. So that members of the public will have as much time as possible to review the proposed regulations, the Department is posting an UNOFFICIAL copy on the IDEA 2004 Web page.
(June 10, 2005)

blue flag bullet OSEP's Annual Leadership Conference
OSEP's Annual Leadership Conference takes place March 29-31 2005 at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. With the theme, "Supporting Student Success" this year's conference will focus on the challenges and opportunities resulting from the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEA) 2004, and is intended to engage State Directors of Special Education, Parent Program staff and others in meaningful discussions about how to promote student success through IDEA 2004.

Download the conference agenda:
download files Word (472K) | PDF (138)

(March 29, 2005)

blue flag bullet OSEP Announces Database Training Seminars
The Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) will offer two seminars to train individuals to conduct secondary analyses of databases in special education. The seminars will be held in the Washington, DC area in early August 2005. The purpose is to encourage the use of OSEP databases for research and policy. These large datasets are the result of national assessments of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act's (IDEA) provisions on academic and educational outcomes of children with disabilities, based on OSEP-funded national representative studies. These datasets are:

Special Education Elementary Longitudinal Study (SEELS)

Second National Longitudinal Transition Study (NLTS-2)

Study of Personnel Needs in Special Education 1999-2000 (SPeNSE)

Study of Personnel Needs in Special Education (SPeNSE): Paperwork Substudy

Study of State and Local Implementation and Impact of IDEA (SLIIDEA)

Special Education Expenditure Project (SEEP)

For more details, please visit the seminar website at We want to design the seminars to meet your interests. Please let us know which datasets you would like training on and other related topics you would like to see covered. Just visit the seminar website and let us know by Feb. 11, 2005.
(January 31, 2005)

blue flag bullet OSEP Part B Verification Visit Letters Now Available Online
(January 27, 2005)

blue flag bullet IDEA Public Meetings Schedule Announced
(January 26, 2005)

blue flag bullet Third Quarter 2004 OSEP Policy Documents on the Education of Infants, Toddlers, Children, and Youth with Disabilities Now Available Online
Correspondence from the Department of Education received by individuals during the Third Quarter of CY 2004 that describes the interpretations of IDEA or the regulations that implement IDEA. Some documents have been redacted.
(January 24, 2005)

dotted line

gold arrow What's New in OSEP

dotted line

gold arrow Archived News from OSEP

| 2006 | 2005 | 2004 | 2003 | 2002 | 2001 |

dotted line

Print this page Printable view Send this page Share this page
Last Modified: 12/02/2008