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“Core academic subjects.” The term “core academic subjects” means "English, reading or language arts, mathematics, science, foreign languages, civics and government, economics, arts, history, and geography."
[34 CFR 300.10] [sec. 9101(11) of ESEA] [20 U.S.C. 1401(4) of IDEA]

“Limited English proficient.” Limited English proficient has the meaning given the term in section 9101(25) of the ESEA.
[34 CFR 300.27] [9101(25) of ESEA]

“Highly qualified.” For a complete definition of the term “highly qualified,” refer to the “Highly Qualified Teachers” topic brief. The definition of "highly qualified special education teacher" in the final Part B regulations contains requirements for special education teachers teaching core academic subjects, special education teachers teaching to alternate achievement standards, and special education teachers teaching multiple subjects, which cross-reference the requirements in section 9101(23) of the ESEA and 34 CFR §200.56 of the ESEA regulations.
[34 CFR 300.18] [20 U.S.C. 1401(10)] [sec. 9101(23) of the ESEA]

"Scientifically based research." Scientifically based research has the meaning given the term in section 9101(37) of the ESEA.
[34 CFR 300.35] [20 U.S.C. 1411(e(2)(C)(xi)] [sec. 9101(37) of the ESEA]

“Scientifically based research” (as defined in the ESEA): (a) Means research that involves the application of rigorous, systematic, and objective procedures to obtain reliable and valid knowledge relevant to education activities and programs; and (b) Includes research that (1) Employs systematic, empirical methods that draw on observation or experiment; (2) Involves rigorous data analyses that are adequate to test the stated hypotheses and justify the general conclusions drawn; (3) Relies on measurements or observational methods that provide reliable and valid data across evaluators and observers, across multiple measurements and observations, and across studies by the same or different investigators; (4) Is evaluated using experimental or quasi-experimental designs in which individuals, entities, programs, or activities are assigned to different conditions and with appropriate controls to evaluate the effects of the condition of interest, with a preference for random-assignment experiments, or other designs to the extent that those designs contain within-condition or across-condition controls; (5) Ensures that experimental studies are presented in sufficient detail and clarity to allow for replication or, at a minimum, offer the opportunity to build systematically on their findings; and (6) Has been accepted by a peer-reviewed journal or approved by a panel of independent experts through a comparably rigorous, objective, and scientific review.
[34 CFR 300.35] [20 U.S.C. 1411(e(2)(C)(xi)] [sec. 9101(37) of the ESEA]

An LEA may not use more than 15 percent of the amount the LEA receives under Part B for any fiscal year, less any amount reduced by the LEA under §300.205 for adjustment of local fiscal effort in certain fiscal years, if any, in combination with other amounts (which may include amounts other than education funds), to develop and implement coordinated, early intervening services, which may include interagency financing structures, for students in kindergarten through grade 12, (with a particular emphasis on students in kindergarten through grade three) who are not currently identified as needing special education or related services, but who need additional academic and behavioral support to succeed in a general education environment. (See Appendix D for examples of how §300.205(d), regarding local maintenance of effort, and §300.226(a) affect one another.) In implementing coordinated, early intervening services under this section, an LEA may carry out activities that include: (1) Professional development (which may be provided by entities other than LEA's) for teachers and other school staff to enable such personnel to deliver scientifically based academic and behavioral interventions, including scientifically based literacy instruction; and (2) Providing educational and behavioral evaluations, services, and supports, including scientifically based literacy instruction. Funds made available for early intervening services may be used to carry out coordinated, early intervening services aligned with activities funded by, and carried out under the ESEA if those funds are used to supplement, and not supplant, funds made available under the ESEA for the activities and services assisted under this section.
[34 CFR 300.226(a)-(b)] [20 U.S.C. 1413(f)]

Dialogue Starter - Cross-stakeholder

Reaction Questions

  1. The term “core academic subjects” has not previously been included in IDEA. The definition is consistent with the definition located in NCLB. What relationship do you see between “core academic subjects” and the role of the teacher under the definition of a “highly qualified” special education teacher?

  2. How might the addition of “core academic subjects” affect students and their families?

Application Questions

  1. How might a school district address the requirements of a highly qualified teacher for each core academic subject for students with disabilities?

  2. How can a district locate and access resources on scientific, research-based interventions for use in schools?

  3. What practices need to be in place to inform students and families of the requirements of core academic subjects?

    These questions were developed by the following stakeholders working together:

    Role: TA Provider
    Location: California

    Role: Teacher
    Location: Florida

    Role: General Education Administrator
    Location: Illinois

    Role: Family Member
    Location: West Virginia

    Role: Related Service Provider

    Role: General Education Administrator
    Location: Wyoming

    Role: Special Education Administrator

    Role: Higher Education
    Location: Indiana

    Role: Related Service Provider
    Location: Kentucky

    Role: Special Education Administrator
    Location: Georgia