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Special Education

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Special Education

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The MDE Office of Special Education is hiring. Check out our job openings by selecting the link below.

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Information Line

Do you have a question related to special education? Call 888-320-8384*

* Interpreter services in several languages are available.

Information Line
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Parent Resources

Information about special education for parents and families.

Explore Parent Resources
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Procedural Safeguards

Schools must provide notice to parents about the protections and rights for their
children with disabilities.

Procedural Safeguards

OSE Spotlight

Age Span Requirements for Special Education Programs Operated in Elementary Buildings

This memorandum addresses the challenges local school districts may face regarding the age span requirement contained in the Michigan Administrative Rules for Special Education R 340.1733(d) program and service requirements.

Download Memorandum

Independent Educational Evaluation

An independent educational evaluation (IEE) is an evaluation conducted by a qualified examiner who is not employed by the district responsible for the education of the student. This document provides an overview of the federal and state requirements for conducting an IEE.

Independent Educational Evaluation

Clarification on Guidelines for Participation in MI-Access

The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) Office of Special Education (OSE) and the Office of Education Achievement and Accountability (OEAA) are issuing a joint memo to provide clarification for individualized education program (IEP) teams regarding guidelines for participation in MI-Access, Michigan’s statewide alternate assessment.

Participation in MI-Access Memo

IDEA 2023 Public Reporting Data Available

Michigan's 2023 performance data for students with an individualized education program (IEP) are now available, as required by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

The data provide districts and communities an opportunity to see what is working well in special education for children and students from ages 3 through 21, and to identify what aspects need improvement. Reporting areas include graduation, dropout, statewide assessment, and parent involvement.

Public Reporting

Updated Procedure for Tiered Corrective Action and TA for Districts with Multiple State Complaint Findings

This document outlines the procedure for MDE OSE collaboration with ISDs when it is necessary to provide intensive support to individual member districts following repeated findings through the state complaint process.

Download Procedure

IEP Team Consideration of the Need for ESY Services Guidance Available

This extended school year (ESY) guidance document and form will assist ISDs and LEAs with IDEA compliance and IEP development.

Download IEP Team Consideration of ESY

Determination of Eligibility for MMSE Deaf or Hard of Hearing Guidance Available

The Determination of Eligibility for Michigan Mandatory Special Education (MMSE) for Infants and Toddlers, Birth to Age Three, Deaf or Hard of Hearing (DHH) guidance document is now available.

The document helps promote the appropriate identification and qualification of infants and toddlers, aged birth to three, who are eligible for MMSE in addition to being eligible for Early On® services.

View DHH Guidance and MMSE Resources

Building Capacity - Improving Outcomes

How the Office of Special Education supports the Michigan Department of Education's Mission, Vision, and Top 10 Strategic Plan.

Download Building Capacity - Improving Outcomes

The Path Forward Strategic Action Plan

An outcome-focused plan to bring about systemic change to support post-school success for students with disabilities in Michigan.

Download Strategic Action Plan

Quick Links

COVID-19 Special Education Information and Resources

Information, guidance, and resources to support students with disabilities during the COVID-19 crisis.

COVID-19 Resources

Previously Released Guidance

A list of all guidance documents released by the Office of Special Education.

Previously Released Guidance

Mediation and Dispute Resolution

Find ways for parents and schools to problem solve about special education issues.

Dispute Resolution Options


Find information about determining a student’s eligibility for special education programs and services.

Evaluations and Eligibility

Michigan Administrative Rules for Special Education (MARSE)

The MARSE are the Michigan rules to follow when implementing special education laws.

Download MARSE


Michigan submits a State Performance Plan/Annual Performance Report (SPP/APR) to the U.S. Department of Education each year. The SPP/APR shows Michigan’s progress on each federal special education indicator and outlines the plan for the future.


Supports for Students With Disabilities

Many offices and organizations outside of the OSE support students with disabilities. Look through the different supports for students with disabilities for help from other sources.

Explore Supports for Students with Disabilities

Michigan Special Education Reference (MI-SER)

The MI-SER is a database of federal and state special education law and policy information and resources.

MI-SER Website

Sign-up for Announcements from the OSE

Sign-up to receive email announcements from the Office of Special Education.

Sign-up for Email Notifications