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For Immediate Release: June 9, 2009
Contact: Mary Stadick Smith - (605) 773-7228

South Dakota gets high marks for Birth to Three, special education

South Dakota is one of only 17 states and U.S. territories to earn the highest ratings possible under both Parts B and C of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. The U.S. Department of Education released the information to states last week. IDEA Part B monitors the effectiveness of special education services at the preschool and K-12 levels, while Part C refers to the state’s Birth to Three program, which serves younger children.

Under Part B, South Dakota has met or exceeded standards in 13 of the 16 public reporting areas required by the U.S. Department of Education. In two of the areas, South Dakota has higher targets than those outlined by No Child Left Behind for students with disabilities. South Dakota students with disabilities have met those higher percentages for both graduation and statewide assessment participation rates.

“In South Dakota, more than 81 percent of students with disabilities who left secondary education during or immediately following the 2006-2007 school year are either enrolled in post-secondary education, employed or both one year later,” said South Dakota Special Education Director Ann Larsen. “That speaks very highly of these young people.”

South Dakota’s Birth to Three Connections program also has met or exceeded standards on all of the 14 indicators required under IDEA Part C.

“We are pleased to have met the stringent requirements set forth in the Birth to Three state performance plan three years in a row,” said South Dakota Birth to Three Director Susan Sheppick. “In South Dakota, more than 1,000 children with developmental delays receive early identification and early intervention services during the critical first three years of their life. That’s an important piece of the puzzle because the result is a youngster who is better equipped to enter a formal school setting.”

Each school district’s Part B results are reported on the 2009 State Performance Plan Public Report, which is now available online at See link below.

For IDEA Part C results, visit See link below.


IDEA Part B results

IDEA Part C results