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Understanding the Standards-Based IEP

Special Education Standards - IEP Standards  Many states and local school districts are embracing a new approach to developing Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) for students receiving special education. This approach—most often referred to as “standards-based IEPs”—is driven by changes to both the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and the current Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA)—currently known as No Child Left Behind (NCLB). However, the use of standards-based IEPs is an emerging practice and one NCLD believes is the right approach for students with LD. States vary as to implementation of this approach.

As of June 2010, the blue states shown below do follow this “best practice”; the green states follow it in a limited way; and the others either don’t follow it at all or data was not available at the time of the survey.

In this Advocacy Brief you will learn how linking the content of a student’s IEP to the state’s academic standards for the student's enrolled grade seeks to raise the learning expectations for students with disabilities and provide opportunities for students to make significant achievement gains.

standards-based iep implementation

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