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Virginia earns top special education rating from U.S. Department of Education

By JENNIFER WADE

jennifer@southwesttimes.com

 

Virginia is one of 18 states and territories that has earned a “meets requirements” designation the U.S. Department of Education’s (USED) new results driven accountability model for rating state compliance with the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

Previously, USED focused on procedural requirements such as timelines for evaluations, due process hearings and transitioning children into preschool services.  The new results driven accountability model includes the participation of students with disabilities in state assessment programs.  It also includes state progress in narrowing achievement gaps in reading and mathematics between students with disabilities and non-disabled students.

“That Virginia was one of a relative handful of states to earn a meets requirements designation under this new system speaks to the commitment of our public school divisions to helping students with disabilities reach their fullest potential,” Superintendent of Public Instruction Steven R. Staples said.  “Behind this success are thousands of teachers, principals and administrators committed to serving all children, regardless of the challenges.”

Thirty-six states and territories were classified as needing assistance from the federal education agency.  Six were determined to need intervention to improve services for students with disabilities.  No states or territories were listed as in need of substantial federal intervention.

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