The Advocacy Institute :: Reports, Publications and Presentations
Special Report Series: State Performance Plans/Annual Performance Reports This series of reports examines each state’s annual targets for key results indicators for FFY 2020-2025. Get the series here.
State-by-State Graduation Rates for Students with Disabilities (January 2023). Analysis of the 4-year adjusted cohort graduation rates for students with disabilities in 2019-2020. Get it here.
Study Finds Wide Variation in Graduation Rates for Students with Disabilities; Little Relationship with Graduation Policies (August 2015) This analysis looks at the varied state policies regarding graduation requirements for students with disabilities and how these policies do, or do not, relate to the graduation rates being reported by states. Get it here.
Diplomas at Risk: A Critical Look at the Graduation Rate of Students with Learning Disabilities (2013): This comprehensive report examines the way in which students with learning disabilities, and more broadly, all disabilities, are exiting high school. Written by The Advocacy Institute for the National Center for Learning Disabilities. Get the report here. (PDF)
Parent's Guide to Response-to-Intervention:
Written by The Advocacy Institute for the National
Center for Learning Disabilities, this guide provides
an overview of the RTI process, describe how it is implemented
in schools and offer questions that parents can ask.
(PDF only) Get
it here. Also available in Spanish here.
Parent Rights in the Era of Response to Intervention (RTI):
If a school is using an RTI approach, what rights do parents have and what strategies can be used to address identification issues? Written for the National Center for Learning Disabilities, this guide supplies all the answers. Get it here.
The RTI-based SLD Identification Toolkit co-authored for the RTI Action Network. View the introductory webinar on the Toolkit.
The Parent/Family Companion Guide for Moving Your Numbers.
the Standards-based Individualized Education Program (IEP):
guide provides an overview of a process and document that
is framed by the state standards and that contains annual
goals aligned with, and chosen to facilitate the student’s
achievement of, state gradelevel academic standards. Written
by The Advocacy Institute for the National Center for Learning
Disabilities. (PDF only) Get
Guide to Universal Design for Learning (UDL):
This guide provides an overview of universal design for learning, an important
movement in education. Written by The Advocacy Institute for the National Center
for Learning Disabilities. Get
the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act and Section
504 of the Rehabilitation Act:
This guide provides information on the ADA Amendments
Act (effective January 1, 2009) and the significant changes the
ADAAA has made
to Section 504 of the Rehabilitiation Act of 1973 relating to
school-age children. Co-authored by The Advocacy Institute and
the National Center for Learning Disabilities. (PDF, 11 pages) Get
State of Learning Disabilities: Facts, Trends and Emerging Issues (Third Edition, 2014): This comprehensive
report examines the status of individuals with learning disabilities
(LD) in the United States and provides a data-based perspective
of LD across the lifespan. Get
Identification: An Analysis of State Policies: This
article about a survey and analysis of state policies for SLD
identification includes an audio interview with the authors and
links to state
Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA):
Legislative History of Special Education: This document traces the history of special education legislation, currently know as the IDEA.
Guide to IDEA 2004: This guide uses accessible language to help parents understand their rights
and responsibilities in the special education process. Written
by The Advocacy Institute for the National Center for Learning Disabilities (PDF, 106 pgs). Get it here.
for Special Education Mediation
and Resolution Sessions: A Guide
for Families and Advocates: The
Advocacy Institute and the Children's Law Clinic at Duke Law
School have combined their talents to create this publication
to help families and advocates make the most of the expanded
dispute resolution options offered by the Individuals with
Disabilities Education Act (IDEA 2004). Download or read online here.
on Alternative Dispute Resolution: This guide provides provide special education
advocates and parents with information about the policies
in place to implement Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)
activities as encouraged or required under IDEA 2004. In
addition, this guide outlines some of the current issues
advocates and parents have identified in using ADR provisions
and offers practical ideas and strategies that may assist
in overcoming barriers to resolving disagreements.(PDF only,
10 pgs) Get it here.
Private Schools and IDEA: Written by The Advocacy Institute for Smart Kids with Learning Disabilities, this brief article describes the role of private schools serving students with disabilities under the IDEA. Get it here.
Reports for the National Council on Disability's IDEA Report Series (2018)
Broken Promises: The Underfunding of IDEA (PDF) (WORD)
Federal Monitoring and Enforcement of IDEA Compliance (PDF) (WORD)
Issue Briefs in collaboration with Stride Policy Solutions:
Issue Brief 1: IDEA Funding Series: Special Education Funding: An Overview of State and Local Maintenance of Effort (PDF, 4 pgs)
Issue Brief 2: IDEA Funding Series: Special Education Funding: LEA MOE 50 % Reduction Provision (PDF, 2 pgs)
IDEA Information Series for Parents and Advocates
series of short, parent-friendly articles on key provisions
of IDEA 2004 and specific changes that parents and advocates
should know and understand. Written by The Advocacy
Institute for GreatSchools.org,
the IDEA 2004 Close Up series is available FREE of charge:
Individualized Education Program (IEP)
the IEP and Academic Content Standards to Improve Academic
Students with Disabilities
Disagreements between Parents and Schools
Learning Disabilities Evaluation and Eligibility
School Year (ESY) Services
Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and Students with Disabilities: Visit our assortment of information and resources on the Every Student Succeeds Act, the latest version of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.
Dyslexia Association Perspectives
on Language and Literacy(Volume
34, No. 4, Fall, 2008)
Accountability for Students with Dyslexia"
issue was developed by guest theme co-editors Candace
Cortiella, Director at The Advocacy Institute,
and Rachel Quenemoen, Senior Research Fellow
and national technical assistance team leader at the National
Center on Educational Outcomes. Read
the issue summary and list of featured articles here.
Special Mother: Getting Through the Early Days of a Child's
Diagnosis of Learning Disabilities or Related Disorders :: Read an excerpt from
this book featuring an interview
with Candace Cortiella, Director at The Advocacy Institute.
Child Left Behind and Students with Disabilities:
NOTE: The No Child Left Behind Act was superceded by the Every Student Succeeds Act in 2015.
ESEA Flexibility: Issues for Students with Disabilities. The Advocacy Institute has identified 7 issues that may have a negative impact on students with disabilities in states that have received ESEA Flexibility (aka "waivers") from the U.S. Dept. of Education. Get it here.
Students with Disabilities Need No Child Left Behind. The Advocacy
Institute perspective on how NCLB is having positive impact
on the nation's 7 million
students with disabilities. (PDF, 8 pgs) Get
and IDEA: What Parents of Students with Disabilities Need to
Know and Do (2006). This information brief, produced by the National
Center on Educational Outcomes, provides parents with an
understanding of important provisions of NCLB and IDEA designed
to work together to improve academic performance for students
with disabilities. Get
it here. (PDF, 23 pgs)
publication is also available in Spanish.
Appropriate Assessment Accommodations for Students with
Disabilities (2005) This Parent Advocacy Brief provided an overview of appropriate accommodations
for students with IEPs or 504 Plans, serves as a guide to choosing accommodations
and suggests questions to ask when making appropriate accommodation decisions. Get
it here. (PDF)
and Roadblocks: How Special Education Students are Faring
Under No Child Left Behind (2007). This report, a
product of the National
Center for Learning Disabilities, provides a compelling
look at how several NCLB requirements have affected this
important and often controversial student group. Get
it here. (PDF, 26 pgs)
State Testing Accommodations:
A Look at Their Value and Validity (2007). This report looks at the variation across states in accommodations provided to students with disabilities. Get it here (PDF)
Change: How Schools and Districts are Improving the Performance
of Special Education Students (2008). This
report, a product of the National
Center for Learning Disabilities, takes a look at how
2 schools and 3 districts are making changes to improve
the academic performance of students with disabilities. Get
it here. (PDF, 30 pgs)