According to 616(a)(1)(c)(i) and 300.600(a) of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act of 2004 (IDEA 2004), States are required to make "Determinations" under 616(d) on the performance of Local Education Agencies with regard to the provision of special education and related services.
Essentially, Determinations are a way of designating the status of each LEA/EIS program in relation to one of four categories: (1) Meets Requirements, (2) Needs Assistance, (3) Needs Intervention and (4) Needs Substantial Intervention.
As implied, these categories represent various intensities of technical assistance and/or intervention. Each State is required to make such a determination using these categories for each and every LEA within the state on an annual basis.
The US Department of Education through the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) is also required to engage in making a Determination for every State and US Territories.
In making Determinations, Illinois considers the following:
- LEA performance on Compliance Indicators (Indicators 4B, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)
- Whether the data submitted were valid, reliable, and timely
- Uncorrected Noncompliance from other sources (e.g. District Monitoring & Complaints)
- IDEA Part B Audit Findings
In addition to these requirements, States may also consider LEA Performance on results indicators and other information it deems relevant. Each state is allowed to decide what general approach it will use to make these determinations as well as who will be involved, and what criteria it will use to identify the status of each LEA within the four required categories. Illinois convened a group of stakeholders to establish criteria for the LEA Determination process.
Additional information on the LEA Determination process, technical assistance tools, tips and resources can be found below.