Category Archives: Special Populations

Maine DOE implements fiscal risk assessment tool for SAUs receiving IDEA funds

Beginning with the FY 16 grant year, and due to the recent adoption of Uniform Guidance for federal grants (UG), Maine DOE Special Services has implemented a fiscal risk assessment tool for all Maine school administrative units (SAUs) receiving Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), PART B – 611 or 619 funds. The assessment calculates fiscal risk by assigning weighted numeric values to multiple measures impacting federal grant management resulting in a total risk value. Examples of measures used in the calculation of the total risk value include:

Continue reading

Changes regarding the upcoming Special Education Child Count

School administrative units are advised to verify the “Special Education Students for Federal Count” report in Infinite Campus and ensure that all student records in ICSE are updated by Oct. 15 for accurate reporting of Part I of the Special Education Child Count (EF-S-05).

Continue reading

Inclusion support for preschool children with disabilities

Children with disabilities and their families continue to face significant barriers to accessing inclusive high-quality early childhood programs, and too many preschool children with disabilities are only offered the option of receiving special education services in settings separate from their peers without disabilities.

Continue reading

Annual notification of schoolwide program options

Schools that receive federal Title I funds, have poverty rates of at least 40 percent and have approved Title IA Schoolwide Plans are eligible to use their Title I funds – and funds from other sources – to develop “schoolwide programs.”

Continue reading

Office of Special Services offers professional development opportunity

The Maine DOE Office of Special Services is offering a training opportunity for high school special education teachers focusing on the development of post-secondary transition plans that are compliant with State and federal regulations. The specifics on the training that begins this fall can be found here.

Continue reading

Providing parents with procedural safeguards electronically

A new section of the Maine Unified Special Education Regulations Birth to Age Twenty (MUSER) permits school administrative units (SAUs) to send certain documents, including the procedural safeguards, to parents electronically with their written consent. See MUSER Section XIV.14 (p. 156).

Continue reading

Reminder to districts: protocol for reviewing invoices for special education services

A reminder, as of July 1, 2015, all of Maine DOE’s contracts with agencies and persons providing special education services to state agency clients stipulate that invoices for those services be sent to the school administrative unit (SAU) responsible for the student. The SAU is responsible for reviewing those invoices to determine whether they are properly payable as described, and will then forward to the Maine DOE any invoice which the SAU found to be properly payable.

Continue reading

Maine DOE clarifies calculation of Maintenance of Effort for IDEA funds

The Maine DOE Office of Special Services is clarifying the calculation of local entitlement funds under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). The federal requirement, maintenance of effort, may be calculated in four different ways:

Continue reading

Office of Special Services announces new learning disability evaluation form

Maine DOE’s Office of Special Services has revised Maine’s Learning Disability Evaluation Report form to adhere to the requirement in IDEA that no single measure or assessment is to be used as the sole criterion for determining whether a child is a child with a disability. With a previous version of the form, it was possible for the IEP team to look only at the data for the first question and make a determination of eligibility, whereas the new form will require that the team review data for all questions in the form before making that determination.

Continue reading

Consultation as a special education service

When the revisions to the Maine Unified Special Education Regulation Birth to Age Twenty (MUSER) were approved during the legislative session just ended, they contained an error that was not caught before their enactment. Section X.2.A(1) states that consultation may be provided by special education teachers or speech/language clinicians or pathologists “as a related service.” That section should have read consultation may be provided by those individuals “as a special education service.” Consultation is a related service only when provided by other providers, such as occupational therapists or physical therapists, or by a speech/language clinician or pathologist to a child whose disability category is not speech or language impairment. The Maine DOE will seek to correct the language in this section of MUSER during the next legislative session.

For more information or if you have questions about consultation services, please contact the Maine DOE’s Roberta Lucas at or 624-6676; or Jonathan Braff at or 624-6671.