Ohio's Special Education Ratings




What are Special Education Ratings?

The special education program in a district is the basis of success for students with disabilities. Every year, districts receive a rating on the performance of their special education program, known as their Special Education Rating.* The Ohio Department of Education uses final data that districts submit through the Education Management Information System (EMIS). These data result in one of four ratings — Meets Requirements, Needs Assistance, Needs Intervention or Needs Substantial Intervention. Ohio receives an annual rating from the U.S. Department of Education based on the same four categories.

The primary basis of the 2017 rating is the final special education program data districts submitted through EMIS for the 2015-2016 school year.



*New* Results for Students with Disabilities

Measures of procedural compliance are historically the basis for Special Education Ratings. Starting in 2018, these ratings also will include measures of results for students with disabilities. Though the changes will not take effect until 2018, this year’s report includes each district’s actual rating (procedural compliance only) and projected rating (a combination of two scores, procedural compliance and students’ results) to show the impact of the new measures on their annual rating.

Rating Reports

The department sends emails to superintendents, special education contacts and community school sponsors with instructions to access their online ratings reports through the Secure Application for Enterprise (SAFE) web portal. District users must have one of the following roles in the Ohio Educational Directory System (OEDS), assigned by their district’s OEDS coordinator, to access these reports:

  • Superintendent
  • Supervisor-Special Education-General
  • Director-Special Education-General
  • Special Education Contact
  • Primary Contact-Sponsor
Click here for access instructions.

After the appeals process is complete, the department adds the ratings to Ohio’s annual public report on the performance of each district’s special education program. 



2017 Actual Rating Criteria

The 2017 rating assesses districts’ performance on the following compliance measures:

  • Disproportionality in discipline rates (Indicator 4b);
  • Disproportionality in special education (Indicator 9);
  • Disproportionality in specific disability categories (Indicator 10);
  • Initial evaluation timelines (Indicator 11);
  • Early childhood transition (Indicator 12);
  • Secondary transition planning (Indicator 13);
  • Timely correction of noncompliance;
  • Submission of valid, reliable and timely data; and
  • IDEA audit findings.

2017 Projected Rating Criteria

  • All of the criteria included in the actual rating; and
  • Math proficiency rate for students with disabilities (across all grades);
  • Reading proficiency rate for students with disabilities (across all grades); and
  • Third grade reading proficiency rate for students with disabilities.
When students’ results measures are added in 2018, annual ratings will also include: 
  • The percent of students with disabilities graduating by meeting the same requirements as students without disabilities; and
  • The percent of students with disabilities participating in regular state assessments in math and reading.


  • Click here for the annual targets established for the results indicators.
  • Click here for additional details on Ohio’s Special Education Ratings process.
  • Click here for a presentation on Ohio’s Special Education Ratings.
*Annual Special Education Determinations are required by Section 300.600(a)(2) of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEA). In Ohio, Special Education Determinations are now known as Special Education Ratings.

Last Modified: 11/3/2017 3:37:32 PM