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Special Education

Results Driven Accountability

In spring 2014, the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) announced that it was beginning to implement a new accountability framework for special education. This framework, known as Results Driven Accountability (RDA), is intended to balance better our focus on improving educational results and functional outcomes for students with disabilities with the need for States and school districts to comply with the requirements of the special education law, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

RDA's Three Components:

  1. State Performance Plan/Annual Performance Reports (SPP/APR), which measures results and compliance. States are currently developing State Systematic Improvement Plans (SSIPs), designed to improve outcomes in targeted areas.
  2. Determinations, which reflect state performance on results, as well as compliance.
  3. Differentiated monitoring and support for all states, but especially low performing states.

The following Core Principles (Full Version) underlie and will guide OSEP's RDA work:

  • Principle 1: Partnership with stakeholders
  • Principle 2: Transparent and understandable to educators and families
  • Principle 3: Drives improved results
  • Principle 4: Protects children and families
  • Principle 5: Differentiated incentives and supports to states
  • Principle 6: Encourages states to target resources and reduces burden
  • Principle 7: Responsive to needs

Massachusetts welcomes this shift in OSEP's focus, which is now consistent with our continued emphasis on compliance and results for all students. We have prepared a presentation that summarizes the changes under RDA and how Massachusetts incorporates results-orientation into our work.

  • Overview of Results Driven Accountability — Assuring Compliance and Improving Results

For more information about RDA, visit the Office of Special Education Programs' Results Driven Accountability Home Page.

Last Updated: April 7, 2020

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Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
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