Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP)
OSEP provides resources for understanding the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Amendments of 2004. OSEP-supported programs and projects are administered by two divisions:
The OSEP website provides information on initiatives, projects and grants, online publications and ongoing research studies.
Find the State monitoring report for your state.
See OSEP Publications & Products
Monitoring and State Improvement Planning Division
Administers the bulk of special education funds by providing grants to states and territories to assist them in providing a free, appropriate public education to all children with disabilities, from birth to age 21. This division is responsible for oversight regarding how states provide these services, referred to as State Improvement Planning (SIP). Each state develops a State Performance Plan (SPP).
Research to Practice Division
Oversees all grant activities related to research, technical assistance, parent training and information, personnel preparation, model demonstration development, and synthesis and dissemination of model programs. This Division is composed of four teams:
- Early Childhood Team
- Elementary & Middle School Team
- Secondary Transition/Postsecondary Team
- National Initiatives Team
Some of the major activities supported by OSEP include:
Find the Parent Training & Information Center for your state.
See a list of the Regional Parent Information Centers that provide Technical Assistance support.
View the research-to-practice resources and materials OSEP has collected at the IDEAs that Work website
View the best practices and other information the IDEA Partnership disseminates.
Parent Training and Information Centers (PTIs)
OSEP supports Parent Training and Information Centers (PTIs) in each state to provide training and information to parents of infants, toddlers, school-aged children, and young adults with disabilities and the professionals who work with them. This assistance helps parents participate more effectively with professionals in meeting the educational needs of children and youth with disabilities.
Technical Assistance Alliance for Parent Centers (TA Alliance)
TA Alliance provides support and technical assistance to Parent Training and Information Centers and Community Parent Resource Centers. PTIs benefit from the TA Alliance in a variety of ways including: access to a computer network of PTIs via the TA Alliance website; increased opportunities to network around critical issues impacting children and youth and special education; opportunities to be a center of expertise; and collaborating with a broad spectrum of other organizations and groups including businesses.
IDEAs that Work
OSEP, its partners and grantees, develop numerous research-based products, publications, and resources to assist states, district personnel, and families to improve results for students with disabilities. This information is collected on their IDEAs that Work website. The site can be searched by participant (teacher, administrator, parent, student, etc.) or by type of content.
OSEP supports the IDEA Partnership which has as its mission to improve outcomes for students and youth with disabilities by joining state agencies and stakeholders through shared work and learning. The IDEA Partnership is designed to collect, share and deliver a common message, information, knowledge and best practices about the regulations and implementation of IDEA.
Projects and Grants
The Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) supports grants and projects totaling over $5 billion, the majority of which provide funds to States to improve services for infants, toddlers, children and youth with disabilities. Additionally, OSEP supports a range of discretionary grant programs that provide grants on a competitive basis to universities, State and local educational agencies, and other private and public profit and non-profit organizations, to conduct research, training, technical assistance, and evaluation aimed at supporting the implementation of IDEA. These discretionary programs totaled $279 million in fiscal year 1999.
Get the details on the NLTS-2
Find the TA&D Network Centers
See the Regional Resource Centers across the country.
Find information on the National Secondary Transition Technical Assistance Center (NSTTAC) website.
Find resources on dropout prevention at the National Dropout Prevention Center for Students with Disabilities (NDPC-SD)
See the National Post-School Outcomes Center (NPSO)
Find information at NICHCY
OSEP-funded grants and projects that relate to transition include:
- Ongoing studies and evaluations such as the National Longitudinal Study of Youth (NLTS-2), a longitudinal study providing a national picture of the experiences and achievements of students in special education as they transition from school to adult life.
- Technical assistance and dissemination network providing comprehensive information and support to states and districts on a variety of special education topics. In particular, the Regional Resource Centers (RRCs) provide support directly to states on numerous special education topics, including secondary transition.
- Three National Centers that focus primarily on transition: National Secondary Transition Technical Assistance Center (NSTTAC), National Dropout Prevention Center for Students with Disabilities (NPDC-SD), and the National Post-school Outcomes Center (NPSO).
- A national dissemination center, National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities (NICHCY)a central source of information on disabilities, IDEA, and special education.
OSEP has developed a series of online publications that are available on the OSEP web site in both PDF files and Word documents. These publications include fact sheets, annual reports, memoranda and letters to the field, executive summaries, videos, and resource guides.