Special Education

State Performance Plan (SPP) for 2005-2012- Revised February 2011 - Indicator 1

Overview of the State Performance Plan Development

See Overview of the State Performance Plan Development preceding Indicator 1.
In addition, New York State (NYS) consulted with its Commissioner’s Advisory Panel  for Special Education Services (CAP) to establish extended targets and improvement activities for Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) 2011 and FFY 2012.  The State’s technical assistance and support networks were also involved in these discussions.

Monitoring Priority: FAPE in the LRE

Indicator 1:  Percent of youth with individualized education programs (IEPs) graduating from high school with a regular diploma compared to percent of all youth in the State graduating with a regular diploma.
(20 U.S.C. 1416 (a)(3)(A)) 

*Note: The definition of Indicator 1, the Measurement and the Targets were revised in 1/10 per federal guidance issued 3/09.

Measurement: (Revised in January 2010)

Measurement for youth with IEPs is the same measurement as for all youth.  The calculation is explained below.

NYS' Measurement:

Percent of “total cohort” of students with disabilities who graduate with a high school diploma (Regents or local diploma) as of August after four years of first entering 9th grade or for ungraded students with disabilities, after four years of becoming 17 years of age.

Note:  The above measurement is the same as was used in FFY 2008 (2008-09) APR, but represents a change from the data provided in prior SPPs and Annual Performance Reports (APRs).  In these earlier documents, the State reported results of the total cohort after four years as of June (or for ungraded students with disabilities, after four years from becoming 17 years of age). Based on a change in federal requirements for FFY 2008, which required the State to use the same data as are used under Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), the change has been made to report results of the total cohort, four years later, as of August (or for ungraded students with disabilities, after four years from becoming 17 years of age).

Graduation rate data for students with disabilities is calculated the same as for all students for current year graduation requirements, see
http://www.p12.nysed.gov/ciai/EducationLawandRegulations.html.

NYS uses the same graduation rate calculation and timeline established by the United States Education Department (USED) for accountability reporting under Title I of the ESEA.  At the beginning of the SPP in 2004-05, this was the percent of “graduation-rate cohort” of students with disabilities who graduate with a high school diploma (Regents or local diploma) as of August 31 of the fourth year after first entering 9th grade or for ungraded students with disabilities, after four years from becoming 17 years of age.  In order to maintain consistency with ESEA in defining this measure, the definition for the graduation percent changed during school year 2005-06 to reference the “Total Cohort,” as described below.

Consistent with federal directions to report data from the 2008-09 school year for the FFY 2009 APR, NYS is reporting the performance of the 2004 total cohort as is used for accountability under ESEA.

Data Source:

Student Information Repository System (SIRS) for collecting graduation data for all students.

NYS’ Calculation for the 2008-09 School Year:

NYS baseline and targets were adjusted in FFY 2007, when the federal ESEA measure used by the State to determine graduation rate changed to being based on the performance of the “total cohort.”

The denominator is now the total cohort.  See below for the definition of the 2004 total district cohort.

The 2004 district total cohort consists of all students, regardless of their current grade level, who met one of the following conditions:

  • First entered grade 9 at any time during the 2004-05 school year (July 1, 2004 through June 30, 2005); or in the case of ungraded students with disabilities, reached their seventeenth birthday during the 2004–05 school year. 
  • Ungraded students are included in the 2004 cohort if their birth date is between July 1, 1987 and June 30, 1988 (inclusive).

Students who have spent at least five months in district schools or out-of-district placements during year 1, 2, 3, or 4 of high school are included in the district total cohort unless they transferred to another diploma-granting program outside the district. (This five-month enrollment rule does not apply to the Statewide aggregated total cohort data displayed in the FFY 2009 APR.)  For the 2004 Total Cohort, Year 1, 2, 3, and 4 are the 2004-05, 2005-06, 2006-07, and 2007-08 school years, respectively.

A student will be included in the district total cohort if the student’s enrollment record in the district shows that the student was enrolled for:

  • at least five continuous (not including July and August) months and the Reason for Ending Enrollment in the district was not one of the following: transferred to a school in another district, a nonpublic school, or a school outside New York; died; transferred by court order; or left the US; or
  • less than five months and has an ending reason indicating that the student dropped out or transferred to an Alternative High School Education Preparation Program (AHSEPP) or High School Equivalency Preparation Program (HSEPP) program and the student’s previous enrollment record in that district (assuming one exists) indicates that the student:
    1. was enrolled in the district for at least five months (not including July and August); and
    2. dropped out or transferred to a AHSEPP or HSEPP program.
The numerator for the calculation of graduation rate is the number of students with disabilities in the total cohort who graduate with a high school diploma (Regents or local diploma) as of August 2008 after four years of first entering 9th grade or for ungraded students with disabilities, after four years of becoming 17 years of age.

Overview of Issue/Description of System or Process

In New York State, a regular diploma is defined as a local or Regents diploma, including a Regents diploma with advanced designation requirements.  The course work for high school graduation requirements may be found at:

In 2005, the Board of Regents approved policy to phase in more challenging diploma requirements over the next few years.  The following chart displays the NYS diploma requirements that will be phased in over the next four years.

DIPLOMA REQUIREMENTS

Entering Freshman Class Local Diploma Requirements Regents Diploma Requirements Regents Diploma with Advanced Designation Requirements
2005 Score 65 or above on 2 required Regents exams and score 55 or above on 3 required Regents exams. Earn 22 units of credit. Score 65 or above on 5 required Regents exams. Earn 22 units of credit. Score 65 or above on 8 required Regents exams. Earn 22 units of credit.
2006 Score 65 or above on 3 required Regents exams and score 55 or above on 2 required Regents exams. Earn 22 units of credit. Score 65 or above on 5 required Regents exams. Earn 22 units of credit. Score 65 or above on 8 required Regents exams. Earn 22 units of credit.
2007 Score 65 or above on 4 required Regents exams and score 55 or above on 1 required Regents exam. Earn 22 units of credit Score 65 or above on 5 required Regents exams. Earn 22 units of credit. Score 65 or above on 8 required Regents exams. Earn 22 units of credit.
2008   Score 65 or above on 5 required Regents exams. Earn 22 units of credit. Score 65 or above on 8 required Regents exams. Earn 22 units of credit.
 

The safety net allows eligible students who fail a Regents examination required for graduation to meet the requirement for a local diploma by passing the Regents competency test(s) (RCT), or an approved RCT alternative, in that subject. The student may take the RCT before or after taking the Regents examination. The safety net is available to:

  1. any student who is classified as disabled by the CSE at any time; and
  2. students with disabilities who have been declassified at any time between grades 8 and 12, as recommended by the CSE at time of declassification; and 
  3. general education students identified under Section 504, as recommended in their 504 Accommodation Plan by the Multidisciplinary Team.

Students using this safety net will be eligible to receive a local diploma. Students with disabilities may also graduate with a local diploma if they score between 55 and 64 on the required Regents exams.

Baseline Data for 2000 Graduation-Rate Cohort as of August 31, 2004. This is FFY 2004 data for the 2004-05 school year.

Fifty-three (53) percent of youth with IEPs in the 2000 graduation-rate cohort graduated from high school within four years (as of August) compared to 77 percent of all students in that cohort. The graduation rate cohort is the official cohort for accountability under NCLB.
Forty-six (46) percent of youth with IEPs in the 2000 total cohort graduated from high school within four years (as of June) compared to 67 percent of all students in that cohort. The “total cohort” includes more students than the graduation-rate cohort and the rules for being assigned to this cohort are similar to what the rules will be for the graduation–rate cohort beginning with students who entered 9th grade or for ungraded students with disabilities who became 17 years of age in the 2003-04 school year.

Discussion of Baseline Data

NYS is following the performance of two cohorts until the definition of the graduation-rate cohort is revised to be similar to the definition of the total cohort. This is expected to occur with the 2003 graduation-rate cohort. The graduation-rate cohort will continue to include graduates as of August, unlike the total cohort results presented in this SPP, which include graduates as of June. The graduation-rate cohort is the official cohort of the State for accountability under NCLB, however, VESID has focused its school improvement activities by using data for the total cohort because the total cohort includes more students and is similar to how the graduation-rate cohort will be revised beginning with the 2003 cohort.

The tables below provide several years of data for the two cohorts. The graduation rate for students with disabilities in the 2000 graduation-rate cohort was 53 percent, lower than the graduation rates of the 1999 and 1998 graduation-rate cohorts. However, it should be noted that each year, more students with disabilities were included in the cohort. The 2000 graduation-rate cohort, for example, had 18,909 students with disabilities or 32 percent more students with disabilities than in the 1998 graduation-rate cohort with 14,306 students with disabilities. The increase in the number of students with disabilities in the graduation-rate cohort is indicative of better understanding among school districts of reporting requirements and also to some changes in the definitions of these cohorts. For the definition of each year’s accountability cohort and graduation-rate cohort, see the 2005-06 STEP reporting manual at http://www.p12.nysed.gov/irs/step and the Student Information Reporting System (SIRS) User Manual at http://www.p12.nysed.gov/irs/sirs/. The graduation rate of the 2001 total cohort was lower than the graduation rate of the 2000 total cohort; however, the 2001 total cohort had 26,281 students with disabilities compared to 21,262 students with disabilities in the 2000 total cohort or 24 percent more students with disabilities. The additional students in the 2001 total cohort are reflective of improvements in the State’s system of data collection that captures the results of more students, especially students who drop out of school, as well as a better understanding among school districts of reporting requirements.

The data for each graduation-rate cohort includes the summer graduates, as of August 31. The data for each total cohort includes graduates as of June 30. The years that are highlighted in the tables below represent the base year data for New York State. New York is revising its targets for the students with disabilities graduation rate to reflect the total cohort data. Once the total cohort data includes graduates as of August, NYS will consider revising its targets again for subsequent years.

Graduation-Rate Cohort as of August 31, Four Years Later

Cohort Year All Students Students with Disabilities
  # in Cohort Graduation Rate # in Cohort Graduation Rate
1998 165,226 77% 14,306 55%
1999 173,978 76% 15,056 58%
2000 (old baseline) 179,092 77% 18,909 53%

Total Cohort As of June 30, Four Years Later

Cohort Year All Students Students with Disabilities
  # in Cohort Graduation Rate # in Cohort Graduation Rate
2000 199,312 67% 21,262 46%
2001 (new baseline) 212,135 66.1% 26,281 37.9%

The data and projected targets presented in the 2004 APR were based on the annual exiters of students with disabilities who earned a local, Regents and High School Equivalency (HSE) diploma as a percentage of the total number of students with disabilities who earned a local, Regents, HSE and IEP diploma or who reached maximum age.  These data did not consider the number of years it took to graduate nor were students with disabilities who dropped out of school included in the calculation.  In addition, these data were not compared to all students or general education students.

Measurable and Rigorous Targets

FFY Measurable and Rigorous Target
2005
(2005-06 school year results) (2002 total cohort as of June)
The percent of youth with IEPs graduating from high school within four years as of June with a regular high school diploma will be 37 percent.
2006*
(2006-07 school year results) (2003 total cohort as of June)
The percent of youth with IEPs graduating from high school with a regular high school diploma within four years as of June will be 37 percent.
2007
(2007-08 school year results) (2004 total cohort as of June)
The percent of youth with IEPs graduating from high school with a regular high school diploma within four years as of June will be 38 percent.
2008
(2007-08 school year results)
(2003 total cohort as of August)1
The percent of youth with IEPs graduating from high school with a regular high school diploma within four years as of August will be 44 percent.**  
2009
(2008-09 school year results) (2004 total cohort as of August)2
The percent of youth with IEPs graduating from high school with a regular high school diploma within four years as of August will be 49 percent. **  
2010
(2009-10 school year results) (2005 total cohort as of August)2
The percent of youth with IEPs graduating from high school with a regular high school diploma within four years as of August will be 52 percent.**
2011
(2010-11 school year results) (2006 total cohort as of August)3
The percent of youth with IEPs graduating from high school with a regular high school diploma within four years as of August will be 53 percent.***
2012
(2011-12 school year results) (2007 total cohort as of August)3 4
The percent of youth with IEPs graduating from high school with a regular high school diploma within four years as of August will be 55 percent.***

1 In FFY 2006, definitions of accountability and graduation cohorts were changed.
2In FFY 2008, the language in this target chart was adjusted to be consistent with the March 2009 federal requirements for lagging by one year the reporting for this indicator, using ESEA definitions and timelines.
3In FFY 2009, USED requested states to add two additional years to the SPP, including adding two additional years of targets.

4Consistent with ESEA, states will be required to set graduation rate targets for all students and for all the subgroups of students beginning with results from the 2011-12 school year. These targets are expected to be significantly higher than those set in the current SPP.  NYS will revise its targets once the Board of Regents establishes these targets for ESEA.

Improvement Activities/Timelines/Resources

(Revisions made in the January 2010 SPP are indicated by underlining of additions and double strikethrough of deletions.)

Activity Timelines Resources

Beginning in 2006-07:
School districts with graduation rates of higher than 18.5 percent, but less than or equal to 35 percent were identified as districts “in need of assistance.”
School districts with graduation rates of 18.5 percent or less were identified as “districts in need of intervention.”
For the 2010-11 school year, school districts with graduation rates of less than 38%, but more than 21%, (with exceptions for higher 5-year graduation rates) were identified as “needs assistance.”  Districts with graduation rates of less than 22% over a two-year period with less than 10% improvement between the two cohorts were identified as “needs intervention” (exceptions for higher 5-year graduation rates).

Each school district, as a result of this designation, was required to engage in one or more of the following activities to improve its graduation rates:

  • Conduct a focused review
  • Work with one of the State’s funded technical assistance networks to implement a Quality Improvement Process.  (rev. 1/10)
  • Use a portion of its IDEA Part B funds to address the area of concern
  • Redirect its fiscal or human resources
  • Conduct a self-review of its policies, procedures and practices
  • Develop improvement plans
2006-12** Special Education Quality Assurance (SEQA) Regional Offices
(rev. 1/10)
Regional Special Education Technical Assistance Support Centers (RSE-TASC)
– formerly Special Education Training and Resource Centers (SETRC, Transition Coordination Sites and Positive Behavioral Interventions and Support networks)* (rev. 1/10)
Develop and implement revised monitoring protocols that specifically focus on compliance issues most related to improving graduation rates. (added APR 2/08) 2007-12** SEQA
RSE-TASC* (rev. 1/10)
Other Technical Assistance Networks
Beginning in 2006-07, conduct “IDEA Effective Instructional Practices” focused reviews of school districts identified as in need of intervention (see above). The review protocol targets requirements most directly related to improved instructional practices, with emphasis on:
  • Individual evaluations and eligibility determinations
  • IEP development and implementation
  • Appropriate instruction from qualified staff
  • Access to, participation and progress in the general education curriculum
  • Specially designed instruction
  • Instruction in literacy
  • Behavioral supports
  • Parental involvement
2006-12** SEQA Regional Offices
RSE-TASC* (rev. 1/10)
Conduct focused “Exiting/Transition” monitoring reviews of selected school districts with graduation rates below the State targets.  School districts experiencing a higher dropout and/or lower graduation rate for students with disabilities are targeted for the exiting/transition review. 2005-12** SEQA Regional Offices
RSE-TASC Special Education School Improvement Specialists and
Transition Specialists (rev. 1/10)
Conduct focused monitoring reviews of Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES) to review student access and opportunities to participate in the general education curriculum and to receive course credit to meet the graduation requirements. Direct Special Education School Improvement Specialists (SE-SIS) to BOCES for technical assistance. (added 1/10) 2005-12** SEQA Regional Offices
RSE-TASC, including Special Education School Improvement Specialists (SE-SIS)* (rev. 1/10)
Develop regional work plans for each of the SEQA offices to direct SEQA resources and the VESID funded technical networks to work with low performing districts.
Create technical assistance tools to use in improving school district instructional programs in areas of literacy instruction, behavioral supports and interventions and/or special education instructional practices. (added 1/10)
2006-12** SEQA Regional Offices
RSE-TASC & RSE-TASC Transition Specialists* (rev. 1/10) See Quality Indicator Review and Resource Guides.  http://www.p12.nysed.gov/specialed/techassist/QIcover.htm (rev.1/10: 2/11)
Provide Quality Assurance Review grants to large city school districts to offset the costs that these school districts may incur to participate in the focused monitoring reviews. 2005-09
end date revised 1/10
IDEA Part B Discretionary Funds
Provide Quality Assurance Improvement grants to school districts to implement improvement activities identified through the focused review monitoring process. 2005-09
end date revised 1/10
IDEA Part B Discretionary Funds
Use a data-driven strategic planning model to develop annual improvement plans for the Big Four Cities (Buffalo, Syracuse, Rochester and Yonkers) and to provide coordinated technical assistance and professional development programs within the cities.  2005-12** Urban Initiative
Provide “Destination Diploma” forums to bring together school districts with the lowest graduation rates and the highest proportion of students taking three or fewer Regents exams in four years. “Destination Diploma” is designed to create a community of professional practice among school district teams, along with State and regional technical assistance providers and professional organizations. 2005-08
Completed (See APR 2/10)
EMSC, SEQA, SETRC*, RSSC**
Partner with other State agencies to leverage local and State interagency funding to implement school-based collaborative efforts to improve results for students with disabilities. 2005-09
end date rev. 1/10
Task Force on School and Community Collaboration http://www.ccf.state.ny.us/schoolcollab.html external link
Promote implementation of Positive Behavioral Intervention and Supports (PBIS) in school districts with graduation rates below the State target. 2005-09
end date rev. 1/10

2009-12**
2009-12**

PBIS project in collaboration with SED, NYS Office of Mental Health (OMH), NYS Department of Health (DOH), the Children’s School Health Network (CSHN) and Families Together NYS (FTNYS)
Expanded number of behavior specialists statewide through the RSE-TASC.*  (added  1/10)
Fund a State technical assistance center on PBIS in 2010.  (added 1/10)

Support preservice and inservice staff development programs to enhance the knowledge and skills of general and special education teachers who provide instruction to students with disabilities. 2005-12** Contracts using Part B IDEA Discretionary funds for:
  • The Center for the Preparation of Educational Interpreters -done 2009
  • Bilingual Paraprofessional Certification
  • Bilingual Personnel Development Center
  • Bilingual Special Education Personnel Preparation Special Educaiton Support Program (rev.1/10)
  • Bilingual School Psychology and Speech and Language Program
  • Intensive Teacher Institute - Blind/Visually Impaired/Deaf/Hard of Hearing
Work with a network of institutions of higher education (IHEs) to enhance collaborations between school districts and IHEs to promote research-based literacy instruction; positive behavioral supports and effective delivery of specially designed instruction to students with disabilities.  (rev. 1/10) 2005-11 Higher Education Support Center (HESC) - IDEA discretionary funds

Increase students with disabilities’ participation in Career and Technical Education (CTE) Programs

  • The Regents policy for program approval will continue to be implemented and administered so that students have access to specialized courses that integrate academic and career and technical skill development.
  • A Career and Technical Education Resource Center (CTERC) has been established to increase graduation rates and support low performing schools. CTERC will provide training and technical assistance in CTE and academic integration.
2005-11 SED’s web site provides information on policy, guidance and resources for CTE programs.
http://www.p12.nysed.gov/cte/
CTERC established at the Questar III BOCES.See http://www.p12.nysed.gov/cte/NewthisMonth/home.html
Promote use of high quality research-based instruction for students with disabilities
  • Convene a group of experts in reading and response to intervention models to assist the State in its development of State criteria to identify students with learning disabilities.
  • Develop guidance materials and resources on research-based reading instruction and response to intervention models.
  • Identify school districts with effective models of response to intervention.
  • Provide staff development and sharing of effective practices.
2005-12** Completed 2006 Completed 2010 IDEA Part B Discretionary Funds
State RTI Technical Assistance Center (added 1/10)

State Personnel Development Grant (SPDG) will identify a cadre of “Effective Practices Schools” throughout NYS.  (added 1/10)
Regulatory changes* to promote greater access and participation in general education and increases in positive outcomes. (added 1/10)
* integrated co-teaching added to the State’s continuum of services for school age students
2007-09 Completed 2009 Staff
*Note: In 2008-09, VESID comprehensively redesigned its technical assistance system to expand resources statewide (see APR 2/10).  For the resources and activities listed in this table, this means the former Special Education Training Resource Center (SETRC), Transition Coordination Site (TCS) and Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) networks were consolidated within the Regional Special Education Technical Assistance Support Centers (RSE-TASC). **Note: Extended the end dates to 2012 coinciding with extended dates of the SPP (rev. 2/11).
Last Updated: February 28, 2011ate -->