President's Message

Winter 2015
Advancing Research for All 
David E. Houchins, Georgia State University

 
 

Organizing the process to develop the Division for Research’s Institute of Education Science (IES) 19-page feedback letter unexpectedly evolved into one of the most intellectually stimulating tasks I have had in a while. Over 70 national special education leaders and numerous special education related organizations were contacted to provide input on our past and envision a better future for special education research.  Continue reading

Research Policy and Funding

1.  DR Comments on IES Research Priorities and Programs

In response to an invitation from IES, the DR Board of Directors consulted with members and submitted a response in late 2014 outlining our perspective on areas in need of research support in special education.  The DR Board welcomes member comments.  See the DR response

2.  Congress Completes Work on FY 2015 Appropriations: ED Research Level Funded


In December, 2014 Congress passed and the President signed an omnibus appropriations bill funding federal government programs through the end of FY 2015 (September 2014 - June 2015).  For the two IES research centers, NCSER and NCER, the result was the same level of funding as in FY 2014.  NCSER is receiving $54 million and NCER $179.9 million. See the funding levels for all US Department of Education programs.

Announcements

DR Announces 2015 Research Award Recipients

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Upcoming Events



Join DR members at the annual Business Meeting and DR-Donald D. Hammill Foundation Reception during the CEC Convention (Friday, April 10, 2015). Details on DR sessions and meetings coming soon.

Policy Insider: Legislative Update

"Innovation Configurations in Action" Webinar on Wednesday, Jan. 28 at 1 PM (EST)

Innovation Configurations are designed to evaluate current teacher preparation and professional development (PD) by determining the extent to which Evidence Based Practices are taught, observed, and applied within teacher preparation and PD programs. Kathleen Magiera and Rhea Simmons (SUNY Fredonia) will present "Innovation Configurations in Action.” Kathleen and Rhea were recipients of an OSEP 325T program enhancement grant and will share how they used Innovation Configurations extensively in their program reform efforts. Please join on Wednesday, January 28th at 1:00pm Eastern for this exciting webinar. Click here to register.

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Journal of Special Education

An Analysis of the Rise and Fall of the AA-MAS Policy

In 2005, to address concerns about students who might fall in the "gap" between the regular assessment and the alternate assessment based on alternate achievement standards (AA-AAS), the U.S. Department of Education announced that states could develop alternate assessments based on modified achievement standards (AA-MAS). This article reports empirical evidence on characteristics of students participating in the AA-MAS, how students were assigned to test types, research on changes in assessment designs over a 4-year period, and changes in rates of participation and proficiency. The results suggest states and districts have struggled with how to appropriately assign students to this test option, and that there is a need to ensure this group of students has access to rigorous standards-based content. It concludes with a discussion of what can be learned from this policy attempt to resolve a very real problem as the United States moves toward the next generation of assessments.

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