What is Disproportionality in Special Education?
Disproportionality exists when a specific group is over or under represented in a specific category or area. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) requires states to monitor schools across 17 results and compliance indicators. The law is meant to guarantee that all students, regardless of their disabilities, receive a free appropriate public education and ensure that they receive services related to their disability. In the law, Congress wrote: “Disability is a natural part of the human experience and in no way diminishes the right of individuals to participate in or contribute to society. Improving educational results for children with disabilities is an essential element of our national policy of ensuring equality of opportunity, full participation, independent living, and economic self-sufficiency for individuals with disabilities.”
Results Driven Accountability and Differentiated Support System
The Indiana DOE/Office of Special Education, has begun a “Results Driven Accountability and Differentiated Support” (RDA) system (from November 2018 going forward). This system includes the following three elements: Compliance, Results, and Data Timeliness. These will result in technical assistance and a professional development system that will support the individual districts based on their determination. There are six federal compliance indicators. All are used as part of Results Driven Accountability. In Indiana, multiple groups are responsible for monitoring indicators; the IDRC tracks Indicators 4A, 4B, 9, and 10, which address discipline and identification of special education students.
For more Information:
IDOEs Determinations based on the Results Driven Accountability and Differentiated Support System
IDRC Analytical Process for Compliance Determination
Each year, school corporations submit data to the Indiana Department of Education (IDOE), who then disseminates it to the Indiana Disproportionality Resource Center (IDRC) for analysis. The IDRC statistician cleans and analyzes the data, then submits the findings to IDOE. For Indicators 4A and 4B, there is a one-year lag in the data submitted; for example, in 2019, the data results included the years 2015-2016, 2016-2017, and 2017-2018. This is to ensure that a full school year is completed prior to the data being submitted to both the state and IDRC Project staff. For Indicators 9 and 10, the data results include the most recent school year; in 2019, the results included the 2016-2017, 2017-2018, and 2018-2019 school years.
For your most recent school corporation's data, please contact IDOE's Special Education Specialist, or IDRC Coordinator.
There are three possible findings IDOE can issue to schools within indicators 4A, 4B, 9, and 10: