Meeting of the Board of Regents | June 2007
THE STATE EDUCATION DEPARTMENT / THE UNIVERSITY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK / ALBANY, NY 12234
The Honorable the Members of the Board of Regents
Rebecca H. Cort
Results for Students and Individuals with Disabilities – 2005-2006 and 2006-07
June 13, 2007
Goals 1 and 4
Issues for Discussion
This report provides results for students with disabilities for the 2005-2006 and 2006-07 school years. It also includes data on the participation of individuals with disabilities in institutions of higher education. The results include the following:
- The 2005-06 Statewide special education classification rate increased slightly to 12.3 percent but has been fairly stable for the past few years.
- Asian students continue to be significantly under-represented in special education while other subgroups are somewhat over-represented as compared to white students.
Placement/Least Restrictive Environment:
- The percentage of school age students with disabilities provided special education services in separate settings decreased from 6.9 percent in 2005-06 to 6.8 percent in 2006-07, but remains higher than the national average of 4.0 percent.
- The Big Five cities place a significantly higher percentage of students with disabilities (33.5%) in general education programs for less than 40 percent of the day compared to other school districts (19.4%).
- Seventeen school districts in the 2005-06 school year had a long-term (more than 10 days) suspension rate of more than 4 percent for students with disabilities. The number of suspensions in these school districts accounted for 35 percent of all long-term, out-of-school suspensions of students with disabilities statewide.
ELA and Math Results:
- There were improvements in every grade from 3 through 8 in the percentage of students with disabilities achieving proficiency by scoring at Levels 3 or 4 in 2007 compared to 2006 in ELA and math. The most significant improvements were in Grades 5-7 math. For example, in Grade 5 math, there was an increase from 31.6 to 41.7 in the percent of students with disabilities with performance at Levels 3-4; In Grade 6 math there was improvement from 21.6 to 31.9 percent and in Grade 7 math there was improvement from 18.0 to 26.8 percent.
- Lower percentages of students with disabilities in every grade from 3 through 8 are scoring at Level 1 in both ELA and math.
- Lower percentages of students with disabilities scoring at Level 1 and an increase in the percentage of students with disabilities scoring at Levels 3 or higher were reported in most Need Resource Capacity (N/RC) categories of schools as well as in most of the large cities.
English Language Learners:
- Students with disabilities who are also English Language Learners are approximately 14 percent of students with disabilities in Grade 3, 13 percent in Grade 4, 12 percent in Grade 5, 10 percent in Grade 6, and 8 percent in Grades 7 and 8. Their performance at Levels 3-4 in Grades 3 to 8 ELA is significantly lower than that of students with disabilities who are not English Language Learners.
- Students with disabilities who are English Language Learners are concentrated in NYC. NYC accounts for 86.3 percent of all students with disabilities who are also English Language Learners.
- The numbers of students with disabilities taking and passing the Regents examinations continues to increase. Approximately five times the number of students with disabilities passed the Math Regents in 2006 (17,127) as compared to 1997 (3,421).
Exiting Data: Graduation and Dropouts
- The number of students with disabilities earning a Regents diploma in 2005-06 school year was 5,366, up from 4,673 in 2004-05. More than 10 times as many students with disabilities earned a Regents high school diploma in 2005-06 compared to 1995-96.
- There is a significant gap in the percent of students with disabilities that graduate from high school based on Need-Resource capacity category of school districts. The range in five-year graduation rate for the 2001 cohort of students with disabilities was 20 percent in NYC to 79 percent in the Low-Need school districts.
- There is also a significant gap in the percent of students with disabilities that drop out of high school based on Need-Resource capacity category of school districts. The range in five-year dropout rate for the 2001 cohort of students with disabilities was 48 percent in the large four cities combined compared to 9 percent in the Low-Need school districts.
Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP):
- Because of required assessments in each grade from 3 through 8 many more school districts had sufficient enrollment of students with disabilities in Grades 3 through 8 combined to be held accountable to demonstrate Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) in ELA and Math.
- In 2005-06, 55.9% of school districts made AYP in all grades and subjects in which they were required to do so. However, many of these school districts established their baseline performance in 2005-06 and will need to demonstrate rigorous improvement towards the target of all students proficient by the Year 2013-14 in order to make AYP in 2006-07.
- In high school, where there were approximately the same number of school districts that were required to make AYP in 2005-06 (193) compared to 2004-05 (189), and an increasing percentage of school districts made AYP for the students with disabilities subgroup in ELA (increase from 48.7 percent to 49.2 percent) and math (increase from 52.4 percent to 62.2 percent).
- The participation rate of individuals with disabilities in institutions of higher education declined slightly compared to the previous year.
ACTIONS TO ADDRESS RESULTS:
- School districts that have data that are significantly disproportionate based on race/ethnicity in identification of students for special education, by specific disability or in placement were identified and requested to review their policies, practices and procedures related to identification and placement and to use 15 percent of their IDEA federal funds to provide early intervening services in the general education program to alleviate the root causes that result in significant disproportionality.
- School districts that have a significant discrepancy in the rate of suspensions by race/ethnicity were notified and asked to review their policies, practices and procedures. These school districts are also required to use 15 percent of their IDEA funds to provide early intervening services in the general education program to address issues that cause this discrepancy.
- VESID has designated 69 school districts “in need of assistance” and 31 school districts “in need of intervention” based on their 2005-06 data on graduation rates, dropout rates and/or their performance on State assessments. The purpose of these designations is to direct the Department’s technical assistance efforts and resources on school districts with lowest performance and thereby improve the State’s performance in these important areas.
- VESID will provide technical assistance to schools to improve instructional areas that significantly contribute to poor student performance – literacy, behavioral supports and delivery of special education services.
- VESID promotes the use of Response to Intervention (RtI) in reading in the early grades as a strategy to affect improvement in students’ performance.
- VESID will use available federal funds to identify successful schools for the purpose of sharing and replicating effective practices.
Charts that provide a visual representation of the data and information are attached.
Reason for Consideration
This item will come before the Full Board at its June 2007 meeting for discussion.
In 2004, Public Law 108-446, (IDEA 2004) added a new requirement for a six-year State Performance Plan (SPP) which required the State to set targets and measure performance on three special education priority areas and 20 related indicators identified by the U.S. Department of Education (USDOE).
For each of the 20 indicators, the State established measurable and rigorous targets for improvement over a six-year period of time. These are the areas that will be the focus of the State’s data collection and reporting, special education monitoring, and school improvement efforts over the next six years.
The Board of Regents received several reports on the specific content of the SPP in October 2005. The SPP and related materials to implement the provisions of this plan may be found at http://www.vesid.nysed.gov/specialed/spp/home.html.
The following recommendations reflect the strategies noted in a separate EMSC/VESID item that is being discussed this month. The proposed actions are designed to address the gaps in performance illustrated in the data presented.
Timetable for Implementation
The Department’s focus for special education will be to implement the SPP over the next six-year period and implement the provisions of the reauthorized IDEA. The initiatives described above will come before the Regents as reflected on the 24-month calendar.