On Line Survey Results for Preschool Special Education Task Force
(Word Format for Printing)

As part of the Governors task force for preschool education an online survey was sent out on the web to obtain financial and programmatic information regarding preschool special education in other states. This survey contained 28 questions that ranged from who made out the survey to how much the state spends on preschool special education. Twenty four states replied. One (Arizona) sent in a survey with no questions answered, leaving a total of twenty three states with usable information.

To summarize the information, the questions and their answers were grouped into four areas: demographic: referring to the numbers of preschool (three and four year olds) children served, fiscal: how much money did the state spend to serve this population, programmatic: dealing with such information such as does the state set tuition rates and who is responsible for early intervention in the state, and finally a series of questions dealing with  quantitative measures of where services are being provided (settings) and outcomes. To further help the reader tables have been provided. A preamble explaining what questions each table summarizes is provided.   


Section One: Demographic information

The table below will summarize results of the question in the online survey that asks the states how many preschool children (three and four years old) were receiving services in their state in the 2005-06 school year. Arizona did not provide information, and two states (Ohio and Arkansas) provided counts of three, four and five year old children, they could not provide a count of just three and four year old children receiving services. Hence there are twenty three states in the table with along with New York’s for comparison purposes.    

Table 1: How Many Children Were Served in 2005-06?

STATE

The number of preschool children  served 

The number of preschool age children in the state 2005 1

The percent of the total preschool population receiving services 

New York

61,422

496,955

12.4%

Arkansas

6,610

73,970

8.9%

California

37,786

1,067,730

3.5%

Connecticut

5,000

85,220

5.9%

Delaware

2,213

21,817

10.1%

Florida

17,847

448,285

4.0%

Georgia

10,250

275,412

3.7%

Hawaii

1,800

35,412

5.1%

Idaho

2,446

41,157

5.9%

Illinois

20,396

358,299

5.7%

Iowa

3,466

70,546

4.9%

Massachusetts

8,116

159,162

5.1%

Missouri 2

10,887

218,779

5.0%

Montana

1,941

20,853

9.3%

Nebraska

2,937

47,830

6.1%

Nevada

3,025

70,055

4.3%

New Hampshire

1,747

14,545

12.0%

North Carolina

11,011

244,875

4.5%

North Dakota

852

13,912

6.1%

Oklahoma

3,778

49,034

7.7%

Pennsylvania

37,638

286,868

13.1%

South Dakota

1,484

20,050

7.4%

Tennessee

12,008

152,932

7.9%

Wisconsin

9,280

134,842

6.9%

TOTALS 3

267,330

4,334,570

6.2%

1 This information obtained from the U.S. Census bureau.

2 This number include 5 year old prekindergarten children hence the 5 year old population was included in the total population.

3 The total percent receiving services of the reporting states was obtained by dividing the number of total students served in all of the states listed by the total of the three and four year old populations of these states.

4 This total is from NCES and is the percent of children enrolled in public schools who are classified.  


Section Two: Fiscal Indicators and Sources of Funding.

The tables below will show results of the two questions asked on the survey. The first was how much did the state spend on preschool special education in 2005-06? The second question asks who provided funding for this program. Table 2 will provide the expenditure information statewide and per pupil (where available), and Table 3 will provide information regarding the sources of these funds. Only 10 states could give actual totals of expenditures for preschool special education. The main reason why the remaining states could not give this information regarding expenditures for preschool special education were in most cases that these expenditures were not segregated out from expenditures for school age children in state/agency budgets. In regards to Table 3, who provided funding sources for preschool special education, only 14 states returned information regarding this on their surveys.    

Table 2: How Much Did Your State Spend on Preschool
Special Education in 2005-06?

STATE

Total expenditures 2005-06

Per Pupil expenditures 2005-06

New York

$818,374,184

$13,323

California

$293,222,110

$7,760

Florida

$119,263,021

$6,683

Georgia

$30,000,000

$2,927

Missouri

$115,576,952 5

$10,616

Nebraska

$24,700,000

$8,410

North Carolina

$51,400,000

$4,668

North Dakota

$1,658,308

$1,946

Ohio 6

$91,469,343

$4,557

Pennsylvania

$185,900,959

$4,939

TOTALS

$1,731,564,877

$8,218

Table 3: What Were the Sources of Revenues for Preschool Special Education Programs in Terms of Percent of Total Revenues?

STATE

LEA

County or Muni

State funds

Federal (IDEA)

Federal (Medicaid)

New York

-

40.5

59.5

-

-

Arkansas 7

-

63

-

36

1

California

-

25

75

-

-

Delaware

26

-

70

3

-

Florida

46

-

43

10

-

Georgia

-

-

85

15

-

Hawaii

-

-

100

-

-

Idaho

-

-

80

20

-

Massachusetts

56

-

38

6

-

Missouri

-

-

83

17

-

Nebraska

27

-

-

71

2

North Carolina

-

-

78

22

-

Ohio

30

-

65

5

-

Pennsylvania

-

-

66

24

10

Wisconsin

100

-

-

-

-

Where funds come from and how a states programs are set up to deliver services are often directly related. The next section deals with how programs services are delivered to the preschool population.

5 This total includes 5 year olds in a prekindergarten program, hence the denominator for this would be 10,887.

6 Ohio was included here even though their expenditure figures included programs for five year olds, or kindergarten students. This was done because of the paucity of data.   

7 Arkansas and Ohio both include information pertaining to five year old children as well as three and four year olds, in Arkansas’s case they report 1,103 five year old children in preschool programs and 2,538 five year old children receiving specialeducation services in kindergarten. Hence since the LEA’s are not involved with delivery of services to the 1,103 five year olds in the preschool program, the LEA’s do not provide funds for this program. In this state approximately 30% of all the five year olds receiving special education services are in a preschool special education program. 


Section Three: How the Various States have set up Programs for Delivery of services

The first question dealing with programmatic areas/administration asked if a state set tuition rates for their preschool children receiving services. In all case the answer was no (except for New York State). This meant that the three follow up questions were moot and not answered by the states. Other questions asked were if a state offers universal prekindergarten, if so were there state wide standards, if these standards were applicable for preschool special education programs? Were there alternate standards for children receiving services? Does the state have a standardized (uniform) method of identification, evaluation, and IEP development for all students 3 to 21? We also inquired as to what agency in the state is responsible for Early Intervention (children ages birth to their third birthday).

Table 4A: How did the state choose to set up delivery of services to their preschool population in need of services?

STATE

Does the state have universal prekindergarten?

If so, are students with disabilities integrated into this program?

Are there program standards set for general education in early childhood?

If yes, are the same standards applicable to preschool special education?

New York

Yes

Yes

Yes

No

Arkansas

No

-

Yes

Yes

California

No

-

-

-

Connecticut

Yes

Yes

No

No

Delaware

Yes

Yes

?

-

Florida

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Georgia

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Hawaii

No

No

Yes

Yes

Idaho

No

-

No

-

Illinois

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Iowa

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Massachusetts

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Missouri

No

-

No

-

Montana

No

-

No

-

Nebraska

No

-

Yes

Yes

Nevada

No

-

No

No

New Hampshire

No

-

No

-

North Carolina

No

-

Yes

Yes

North Dakota

No

-

No

-

Ohio

No

-

Yes

Yes

Oklahoma

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Pennsylvania

No

-

No

-

South Dakota

No

-

Yes

Yes

Tennessee

Yes

Yes

Yes

No

Wisconsin

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Note: for Table 4A above and 4B below some states did not answer all of these questions.

Table 4B: How did the state choose to set up delivery of services to their preschool population in need of services?

STATE

Are there alternate standards used for some preschool special education programs?

Do you have a uniform system for evaluation, identification & IEP development for all students 3-21?

Who is responsible for EI in your state?

New York

No

No

Health Dept

Arkansas

No

Yes

Health Dept

California

No

No

Dept of Developmental Services

Connecticut

-

?

other

Delaware

-

No

Health Dept

Florida

No

No

Health Dept

Georgia

No

Yes

Health Dept

Hawaii

No

Yes

Health Dept

Idaho

No

Yes

Health & Welfare

Illinois

No

Yes

Dept of Human services

Iowa

No

Yes

Education Dept

Massachusetts

No

Yes

Health Dept

Missouri

-

Yes

Education Dept

Montana

No

Yes

Health Dept

Nebraska

No

Yes

Co-lead Education & Health & Human services

Nevada

No

Yes

Health Dept

New Hampshire

-

Yes

Health and Human services

North Carolina

No

Yes

Health Dept

North Dakota

No

Yes

Human services Dept

Ohio

No

No

Health Dept

Oklahoma

No

No

Education Dept

Pennsylvania

No

Yes

Education Dept

South Dakota

Yes

Yes

Education Dept

Tennessee

No

Yes

Education Dept

Wisconsin

No

Yes

Health & family services


Section Four: quantitative measures of program delivery and outcomes.

As the title of this section above indicates, this section summarizes information dealing with such questions as settings of services and outcomes of preschool programs in the various states. The first of the five questions that are dealt with here are: where are services being provided to children receiving preschool special education (by entity, as an example: an LEA). The second question asked to the state to list by percentages  the settings where these children were receiving services (settings such as whether special education class half day or full day etc). The third question asked: ‘for those preschool students with disabilities who, based upon their IEP’s require integrated settings, where are those integrated settings located by percentage’. The fourth and fifth questions asked about Early Intervention transitions to preschool programs and preschool transitions to school age programs. 

As in the other sections above some states did not answer the questions above, in most cases this was due to the states not collecting this type of data. In several cases (one of these being Pennsylvania) they had data but this data was incompatible with the data that was requested by the survey. Those states where they could not answer the question were not included in the tables below. The information dealing with the five questions above along with their attendant analysis are broken down into two tables.

The first (Table 5 A) summarizes the results from the survey by grouping together three related questions, namely what entities provided preschool special education, and the settings in which these services were provided, and where were services provided for children who required integrated settings.

The second table (Table 5 B) summarizes the related two questions of what percentage of children where referred to preschool/school age services, determined to be eligible for preschool/school age services, receive preschool/school age services, and who is responsible for EI (early intervention) in that state. The question of whether the child was preschool or school age was determined by what program they were transitioning from, whether EI to preschool or preschool to school age.

Table 5 A: What Entities Were Providing Preschool Special Education and Where.

State What are the %s of children receiving preschool special education by entity % of preschool children by settings For those preschool students who based upon IEPs require integrated settings where are these settings locvated?
New York

87% private for nonprofit/not for profit
8% LEA
5% BOCES

45% related services only
16% special call FT
14% SEIT
11% integrated class FT
7% integrated class PT
7% special class PT
Data not available?
Arkansas 8 13% LEA
87% other public entity
Data not available 25% Public integrated programs
28% Private integrated progrsm (for profit)
24% Head start
California 99% LEA 48% special class FT
40% integrated PT
11% SEIT
82% public integrated
4% Daycare centers
7% Head start
5% Home
Connecticut 100% LEA Data not available Data not available
Delaware 100% LEA Data not available Data not available
Florida 100% LEA Data not available Data not available
Georgia 90% LEA
8% other public entity
1% private not for profit
1% provate for profit
7% special class FT
10% integrated PT
82% Integrated FT
1% SEIT

92% public integrated

4% daycare
3% head start

Hawaii 100% LEA 80% Special class PT
10% Integrated class PT
10% Integrated class FT
90% public integrated
1% private integrated not for profit
1% private integrated for profit
8$ head start
Idaho 100% LEA 60% special class PT
23% integrated class FT
15% related services
32% public integrated programs
Illinois 98% LEA
1% Private not for profit
Data not available Data not available
Massachusetts Data not available Data not available 74% public integrated
18% daycare centers
45% head start
3% home
1% other
Missouri 98% LEA
1% Private not for profit
Data not available Data not available
Montana 100% LEA 90% other
10% SEIT
75% public integrated
24% other
Nebraska 100% LEA Data not available Data not available
Nevada 96% LEA
2% other public entity
1% private not for profit
1% private for profit
60% special class PT
17% integrated class PT
11% SEIT
6% Related services only
2% special class FT
2% integrated class FT
90% Public integrated
2% private integrated
2% daycare centers
5% head start
1% home
New Hampshire 100% LEA Data not available 100% other
North Carolina 9 Data not available

2% special class PT
16% special class FT
1% integrated class PT
59% integrated class FT
2% SEIT
9% related services
3% other

Data not available
Ohio 100% LEA Data not available Data not available
Oklahoma Data not available Data not available Data not available
Pennsylvania 100% LEA Data not available Data not available
Wisconsin 100% LEA 100% other 100% other

8 As noted previously Arkansas and Ohio’s data pertains to three, four and some portion of the five year old children attending school programs, most other states would consider these children school age.
9 North Carolina’s data is incomplete, their total percentages sums to 92%. 

           
The table above contains a great deal of data that can be confusing, but by picking out a few salient facts we can begin to see certain patterns.

Table 5 B: Transitions, Early Intervention to Preschool and Preschool to School age.

State What % of EI students in your state are refereed for preschool, determined to be eligible, receive preschool services? What % preschool students are declassified, referred for services, determined eligible, receive services
California 39% referred
15% determined to be eligible
15% receive services
82% declassified
92% referred
92% determined to be eligible
92% receive services
15% Move to LRE
Delaware 65% determined eligible No data available
Georgia 78% referred
92% determined to be eligible
100% receive services
2% declassified
98% referred
98% determined to be eligible
100% receive services
50% move to LRE
Hawaii 35% referred
30% determined eligible
30% receive services

5% declassified
5% referred for school age services
90% determined eligible
90% receive services
50% move to LRE

Idaho 49% referred for preschool
43% determined eligible
32% receive services
No data available
Illinois 78% Referred for prescgool
70% determined eligible
61% receive services
No data available
Massachusetts 77% referred for services
71% determined eligible
71% receive services
No data available
Montana 61% referred for preschool
61% determined eligible
100% receive preschool
100% receive school age services
Nebraska 100% referred for preschool
100% determined eligible
100% receive preschool services
100% referred
100% determined eligible
100% receive school services
North Carolina No data available 35% declassified
59% referred for school age services
Pennsylvania No data available 10% declassified
75% referred for school age services
  • The reader should note that only eleven states had any data at all, and much of that was incomplete. In many cases the states do not at present have the capacity to collect this data.
  • In regards to referrals from EI to preschool, some states have obviously calculated the last piece of data (the percent of students actually receiving preschool services) as the percent who were in EI and others as the percent who got referred or were made eligible.
  • Due to the lack of data, it is difficult to draw conclusions as to what the submitted data is saying about how states manage transitions from E.I. to preschool and preschool to school age programs.

Summary

Twenty four states responded to the survey we sent out via the web. These states varied from large states with a mix of urban school districts, suburban and rural districts (California, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Massachusetts, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin), to others who are very rural (North and South Dakota). The methods of funding preschool special education ranged from a great reliance upon federal IDEA funds (Nebraska), 100 percent reliance upon state funds (Hawaii), or 100 percent reliance upon local revenues (Wisconsin) and every possible combination between these extremes.  

About half of the respondents had universal pre kindergarten, and those who did indicated that children with disabilities are integrated into their programs. About half of the states had program standards for general education preschool programs set up (fourteen), though some of those did not have universal prekindergarten. All but one of the states who had general preschool education standards said that these program standards were applicable to preschool special education programs. Only one state said that they have alternative standards for some preschool special education programs (South Dakota). Most states said they had a uniform system of identification, evaluation and IEP development.

The agency that most states used for E.I. was the states health department (more than half). In five states their education department provided E.I. services, and this was the second most popular choice in this survey. New York State’s program was the most unique in that services were provided through private not for profit and for profit entities and not the LEA’s.