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Special Education Directors' Corner
Submit Contact Information for Child Find Coordinator
As required in the corrective action plan for State Complaint 2022.549, CDE must publish the name and contact information for each Administrative Unit’s designated Child Find Coordinator by Dec. 30, 2022.
Please use this form to provide the name and contact information for your designated Child Find Coordinator by Dec. 21, 2022. If you have questions, please contact email@example.com.
COVID Quick Links
1-Jan Federal Application Project Narrative Amendment Window #2 opens
31-Jan Federal Application Project Narrative Amendment Window #2 closes
1-Feb 2022-23 Budget Revision Window #1 Opens
3-Feb A complete and error-free December Count Snapshot is due
24-Feb December Count Student and Staff Snapshot closes
28-Feb 2022-23 Budget Revision Window #1 Closes
ESSU must have current contact information for all state-level Special Education Directors and Special Education Fiscal Contacts. Our office communicates important updates and information through our listserv, please be sure that we have accurate, updated information. Communications from this listserv will come from CDE_SPED.
The ESSU e-newsletter is our office's primary form of communication with the field. It is published once a month and contains information from the Office of Gifted and Talented, Office of Facility Schools, and Office of Special Education.
Notice of State Complaint Decision and Corrective Action Plan for CDE
On Sept. 30, Disability Law Colorado filed a state complaint (2022.549) against CDE concerning IDEA-eligible youth detained in county jails. The complaint contained two allegations. First, whether CDE exercised its general supervisory responsibility pursuant to ensure the provision of a free appropriate public education (FAPE) to eligible youth between the ages of 18 to 21 incarcerated in county jails. Second, whether CDE has a policy, practice, or procedure in place to monitor county jails or their adjoining school districts to ensure that youth with disabilities have FAPE available to them.
Because the complaint was filed against the Department, CDE contracted with an independent investigator, Lenore Knudtson, to conduct the investigation. On Nov. 29, the investigator issued a final decision that concluded CDE has not exercised adequate general supervision under IDEA for students, aged 18-21, detained in county jails. Consequently, CDE must complete the activities identified under the “Corrective Action Plan” for State Complaint 2022.549 (attached).
Completion of these activities will require cooperation from each Administrative Unit. Shortly, CDE will be sending out instructions and requests for information related to these mandatory activities. Thank you in advance for your cooperation.
FAQ on Special Education and UPK Released
Frequently asked questions (FAQ) about special education and universal preschool have been released by CDE. The FAQ was developed in response to questions from the field related to preschool special education and universal preschool (UPK). The Colorado Department of Education (CDE) is responsible for administering special education, while the Colorado Department of Early Childhood (CDEC) is responsible for administering UPK. Answers were developed by CDE with consultation from CDEC.
Additionally, CDE Standards for Placement of Preschoolers with IEPS in Educational Programs has been released. These standards were identified by the Colorado Department of Education based on state and federal special education law, rules, and include supportive resources to assist with implementation.
Please share these documents with others in your system, as appropriate. We anticipate that additional questions and answers will be added to this CDE webpage over time.
New or Reorganization Application & Checklist
*Applications for New or Reorganized AUs are due Thursday, September 1, 2022, for districts seeking to begin operations for the 2023/2024 school year.
- New or Reorganization AU Application (Word Doc) - PDF Version Coming Soon
- Fact Sheet - Applications for or Reorganized Administrative Units (PDF)
- Instructions for Third Party Report (PDF)
- Additional Information from Existing Administrative Unit
ESSU Spring 2023 Meeting
WHO: Facility Schools, Gifted Education, and Special Education Leaders
WHEN: Thursday, April 13 - Friday, April 14, 2023
- Please watch for more information about registration and the agenda in the Exceptional Student Services Newsletter, and emails from ESSU Listservs beginning in early January.
Beginning in 2023, CDE will no longer be reimbursing travel expenses for events, reimbursements will need to be submitted to individual districts.
We have secured a discounted rate for rooms at the Denver Marriott West:
Cost: $159 USD per night
- Book your group rate for Spring Directors Meeting
- Last Day to Book: Wednesday, March 22, 2023
*If you try to book online and are unable to do so because the discounted rooms are full, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Other nearby hotels:
- Hampton Inn Denver-West/Golden; 17150 W. Colfax Avenue, Golden, CO 80401
- Courtyard Denver Golden/Red Rocks, 14700 West 6th Avenue Frontage Road, Golden, CO 80401
- Residence Inn Denver Golden/Red Rocks, 14600 West 6th Avenue Frontage Road, Golden, CO 80401
- Springhill Suites Denver West/Golden, 1315 Colorado Mills Parkway, Lakewood, CO 80401
For questions or more information, please email email@example.com
Upcoming – ESSU Meetings
Spring 2023 ESSU Meeting - April 13 & 14, 2023
Fall 2023 ESSU Meeting - Sept. 14 & 15, 2023
New Directors Orientation (NDO)
2022 Orientation for New (or Near-New) Directors of Special Education
The 2022 Orientation for New (or Near-New) Directors of Special Education will be held on August 29, 2022. View the New Special Education Directors webpage for more information about Orientation for New (or Near-New) Directors of Special Education.
Information and materials from past NDO meetings
Access the handouts from the 2021 New Directors Orientation (NDO) at the 2021 New Directors' Orientation Resources.
- Adoption of Extended Part C Option for Colorado (PDF) - April 2022
- Early Intervention Evaluation Responsibilities Transfer to CDHS/Early Intervention (PDF)
- K - 12 Resources for Afghan Evacuees (PDF)
- Potential Impact of the Family First Prevention Services Act on Special Education Students (PDF)
- Questions and Answers On Individualized Education Programs (IEPs), Evaluations, and Reevaluations (PDF)
- Letter to State Directors of Special Education (PDF)
- Non-Regulatory Guidance: Ensuring Educational Stability for Children in Foster Care U.S. (PDF)
- Memo Notice of Change in Reporting Requirements and CDE Guidance for Measuring Indicator 13 Compliance (PDF)
- CMAS ELA Accommodation Policy Updated to Align with Colorado Academic Standards Expectations
- OSERS FAQ: The Rights of Students with Disabilities in Public Charter Schools under the IDEA (PDF)
- OCR FAQ: The Rights of Students with Disabilities in Public Charter Schools under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (PDF)
There are many ways that children and families can be displaced. There are floods, fires, and other types of natural disasters that can destroy homes or make them uninhabitable for periods of time. Families can also experience hardships that result in major home life changes.
Having trouble with this webpage?
If you have problems with broken links or accessing the content on this page, please contact the Exceptional Student Services Unit at ESSU@cde.state.co.us. Please copy the URL link for this page into the email when referencing the problem you are experiencing.