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Office of Special Education

About the Office of Special Education

This office administers both the state's Exceptional Children’s Educational Act (ECEA) and the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) for children with disabilities. This website is a resource for teachers, administrators, and parents of students with exceptional educational needs due to disability, or learners who are culturally and/or linguistically diverse or have some other special need. The Office of Special Education is one of three offices within the Exceptional Student Services Unit (along with the Office of Facility Schools and the Office of Gifted Education).

Update your Special Education Director and Fiscal Contact

It is critical that ESSU has current contact information for all Special Education Directors and Special Education Fiscal Contacts, please submit your information at the link below. In order to be included in the listserv you must complete this form annually.

What's New

Autism & Mental Health Webinars

Join us for a two-part series about Autism and Mental Health!

When: March 4 & 11, 2020 from 2:30 -3:15 PM

In recent years, our society has become more informed on understanding mental health conditions, identifying the issues that associate with them, and learning how we can provide support to those who need help. However, the intersection of neurodiversity and mental health contains some unique differences. Our world is not as “fluent” in how to identify when people on the autism spectrum are experiencing a mental health crisis; nor are we able to clearly identify how to provide support that is effective while at the same time being “neurodiverse-friendly”. Research has indicated that autistic adults may have a higher risk of suicide than the rest of the population*, making it a crucial conversation topic we need to keep enforcing.

Part 1, on March 4th, will address a few red flags to watch for (that especially apply for neurodiverse individuals), and a few possible barriers that can prevent those who are affected with mental health conditions from getting the help they need to improve their quality of life.

Learn More About Part 1  Register for Part 1

Part 2, on March 11th, will continue the conversation with a few ideas on how to help those on the spectrum with coexisting mental health conditions, and a few ideas for those of us who are autistic on how we can take better care of ourselves.

Learn More About Part 2  Register for Part 2 

Strategies to Increase Student Participation in Post-school Outcomes Interviews

Do you have or need strategies to increase student participation rates in the post school outcomes (PSO) interview process?! 

If you have strategies or would like to know more about how to increase student participation rates in your district, please join the discussion, Tuesday, February 25, 1-2pm on Zoom to find out strategies used by your colleagues and to share the strategies you’ve used to contact youth.

If you have additional questions or would like to share you strategies, please email me at I look forward to hearing from you!

CSDB Report - Program Review for the Colorado School for the Deaf and the Blind

Read the independent program review team’s CSDB report - a report of the Colorado School for the Deaf and the Blind (PDF).

Change in Reporting Requirements for Measuring Indicator 13 Compliance.

View the memo, webinar handout & compliance tips on CDE's Indicator 13 webpage

Ways to Search this Site

  1. You can use the Google Search box (only searches CDE) at the top right side of the webpage and type in what you are looking for.
    Image of Google Search Box on CDE Website
  2. You can use our Topic Index - alphabetical list of topics for the Office of Special Education.

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If you have problems with broken links or accessing the content on this page, please contact our web content coordinator Amanda Timmerman at Please copy the URL link for this page into the email when referencing the problem you are experiencing.