Tuesday, August 24, 2010

D.C. Receives $75 million in federal Race To The Top funding

District of Columbia schools have been awarded $75 million in federal Race To The Top funding. Race To The Top is part of President Obama’s $4 billion education reform agenda.

Along with Maryland, DC was one of 9 states to receive the award in this second round of the competition.

The competition is funded through the 2009 economic stimulus law.  It encourages ideas to connect student performance data to individual teachers and principals, targeting low-performing schools, adopting common national standards and creating public charter schools.

OSSE Posts Proposed Individualized Education Program (IEP) Process Policy for Public Comment

This proposed policy creates uniform expectations for local education agency (LEA) implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) requirements governing the individualized education program (IEP) process. The IEP process requires parents, teachers, LEA personnel, evaluators, and related service providers to pool their collective knowledge and expertise to ensure that students with disabilities are provided a free appropriate public education (FAPE) in the least restrictive environment (LRE). As the state education agency (SEA), OSSE expects all LEAs to ensure that all appropriate IEP Team members participate in the IEP process to develop complete and valid IEPs.

The public comment period is for 30 days beginning Friday, August 20, 2010, and concluding Monday, September 20, 2010. A public hearing for the proposed policy will be held Tuesday, September 7, 2010. A copy of the hearing notice can be found here*.
Individuals who wish to submit their comments as part of the official record should do so no later than 5 pm Monday, September 20, 2010 to:

Tameria Lewis, Assistant Superintendent for Special Education

c/o Desirée Brown

Office of the State Superintendent of Education

Division of Special Education

810 1st St. NE - 5th Floor

Washington, DC 20002


e-mail to osse.publiccomment@dc.gov

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Judge Rules in DL Case that D.C.'s Child Find Program Violated the Law

Last week, a Federal District Court judge ruled that D.C. broke the law by failing to locate, identify and evaluate disabled pre-school children and offer them an education, as required under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. The case has been in litigation since 2005

Chief Judge Royce Lamberth found that there was no "genuine dispute" that [the District] only provided a [free and appropriate education] to approximately 600 students per year, which is half of the qualifying 3- to 5-year-old children in the District” who qualified.  He relied on data for the years 2000 to 2007.

Read more at the Washington Examiner: http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/local/blogs/capital-land/dcs-special-needs-pre-schoolers-vindicated-in-court-100432679.html#ixzz0wzyxYWVV

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

D.C. School Performance Toward Adequate Yearly Progress

In 2010, 15 schools in the District of Columbia met the annual goals of No Child Left Behind, down from 54 in 2009.  AYP is a yardstick of a school's progress toward full proficiency by 2014.

Eight DCPS elementary schools met the benchmark, down from 29 in 2009 and 38 in 2008. Two of those schools, Mamie D. Lee and Sharpe, provide services exclusively to special needs students. Of the remaining six, Mann, Key and Stoddert elementary schools are in Ward 3, Kenilworth is in Ward 7, and Ludlow-Tayor is in Ward 6.  Montgomery was merged into Ward 6's Walker Jones Educational Campus in June. Two senior high schools joined the ranks as did four public charter elementary schools.