December 1, 1986 - This report is submitted pursuant to the "sunset" review procedures enacted by Chapter 1270, Statutes of 1983 (Senate Bill 1155). Chapter I of this report provides background information on the special education program. Chapter II contains our comments on the findings made by the State Department of Education (SDE) in its sunset review report. Chapter III presents our response to the recommendations made by the SDE. Finally, Chapter IV summarizes all of our recommendations regarding the special education program.
January 3, 2013 - Special education is the catch-all term that encompasses the specialized services that schools provide for disabled students. Developing a more thorough understanding of how California’s disabled students are served is the first step towards improving their educational outcomes. Toward this end, our primer is intended to provide the Legislature and public with an overview of special education in California—conveying information on special education laws, affected students, services, funding, and academic outcomes.
Also, see our 2016 animated video series Overview of Special Education in California.
November 6, 2019 - Recent legislation directed the Legislature and administration to work collaboratively to consider changes in how the state organizes, delivers, and funds special education, with the overarching intent to improve outcomes. With this report, we aim to inform these fiscal and policy conversations by providing an overview of special education in California.
Update 11/8/19: Adjustments made to per-student education costs
February 22, 2022 - The Governor’s budget includes several proposals related to State Preschool, with the primary goal of increasing the number of children with disabilities enrolled in the programs. In this post, we provide background on State Preschool, describe the Governor’s proposals, and provide our comments associated with these proposals.
January 25, 2022 - This post provides background on various special education programs, describes the Governor's proposals related to these topics, and offers associated recommendations and issues for the Legislature to consider.
October 24, 2022 - This post summarizes overall Proposition 98 funding and K-12 education spending in the 2022-23 budget package. It is part of our Spending Plan series, which contains posts focused on each major sector of the state budget.
February 28, 2018 - Presented to Senate Committee on Education;Assembly Committee on Education;Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Subcommittee No. 1 on Education; and Assembly Budget Subcommittee No. 2 on Education Finance
February 27, 2018 - This post traces the history of state special education funding in California to better inform conversations about how this funding might be allocated going forward.
April 25, 2019 - Presented to Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Committee Subcommittee No. 1 on Education
February 24, 2005 - We make several recommendations related to special education.
February 23, 2021 - In the Supplemental Report of the 2020-21 Budget Act, the Legislature tasked our office with convening a work group and providing recommendations for updating the special education Out-of-Home Care formula by March 1, 2021. This report provides background on the issue, describes the assessment and recommendations of the work group, and includes our office’s comments for the Legislature as it considers updating the formula.
January 4, 2018 - In 2015‑16, California provided early intervention services to about 41,000 infants and toddlers with special needs. These infants and toddlers either have a disability (such as a visual or hearing impairment) or a significant developmental delay (such as not beginning to speak or walk when expected). California’s early intervention system consists of three programs administered by two types of local agencies—schools and regional centers for persons with developmental disabilities. This report provides the first comprehensive analysis of this system since it was established in 1993. The report has three main sections. We first provide background on California’s early intervention system, then assess this system, and conclude by recommending several ways to improve the system.