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Early Access to Students with Disabilities Data Application User Tips

This document provides guidance for LEAs on how to use the data in the Early Access to Students with Disabilities Data application, available to LEA Data Managers and LEA Special Education Points of Contact (LEA SE POCs) in QlikSense. If you or your LEA have any questions, please contact your dedicated OSSE liaison.


The Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) developed a data visualization application in Qlik Sense that provides timely and appropriate data to help LEAs plan and prepare to meet the needs of students with disabilities including current students and students who are pre-enrolled in, but not yet attending, the LEA. This application provides a preview of student-level special education data, including:

  • Primary disability category
  • Most recent eligibility start and end dates
  • IEP start and end dates
  • Special education level
  • Weekly service hours
  • Related services: setting, time, frequency
  • Least restrictive environment
  • Dedicate aide and hours
  • Transportation eligibility and mode
  • ESY eligibility
  • Assistive technology

As of May 1, 2017, LEA Data Managers and LEA Special Education Points of Contact (LEA SE POCs) have access to this application in Qlik. The application relies on enrollment data from MySchoolDC until an LEA’s student information system (SIS) begins sending enrollment information to the Statewide Longitudinal Education Database (SLED) during the summer (usually mid- to late-July, but this varies by LEA) for the upcoming school year. The data available in the application is provided in real time; therefore, users should be mindful of the frequency with which the data may change when making planning decisions. The application will remain online until the fall, at which time all LEA SISs will be switched over.
To assist LEAs in effectively using the data available in the Early Access to Students with Disabilities Data application, OSSE recommends the following steps:

1. Identify LEA staff members to include in data discussions.
Data does not work in isolation. Consider connecting the special education coordinator with the student enrollment manager or data team to conduct a more comprehensive analysis of student information. Also consider looping in the business or finance teams to assist with budgeting.

2. Compare staffing levels with student needs.
Examine the number of incoming students with disabilities, and their accompanying service hours and service types, to determine appropriate staffing levels. Identify specific services with the greatest influx and determine if current LEA staff and resources are adequate to provide those services.

3. Determine additional staff training needs.
Review student services and needs to determine if school staff is prepared with the necessary training and skills to serve these students. For example, if an LEA is receiving a large number of students with autism, consider if staff is adequately trained on serving and interacting with these students.

4. Plan for dedicated aide allocations.
Review the number of students whose IEPs indicate a dedicated aide, along with required hours, to ensure adequate staffing.

5. Review student information to determine classroom and cohort assignments.
To ensure students with disabilities are appropriately educated in the least restrictive environment (LRE) with peers without disabilities, examine student LRE data, special education levels, and primary disability categories to create diverse classrooms.

6. Prepare to complete transportation requests.
Review students who are eligible for school year transportation and prepare the information needed to submit a Transportation Request Form (TRF) in the Transportation Online Tool for Education (TOTE) application to ensure students are appropriately routed and receive special education transportation services on the first day of school (or as soon as possible thereafter).

7. Develop a calendar of meetings.
Review each student’s eligibility end date, and IEP start and end dates, and set up a calendar for IEP team meetings and reevaluations. Review IEPs for fifteen-year-old students in anticipation of beginning secondary transition planning for these students prior to their sixteenth birthdays.

8. Contact the sending schools to coordinate transfers of student records and other relevant information.
Reach out to colleagues at each sending school to establish a channel of communication which will ensure a smooth transition for both staff and students. Request appropriate student records or transcripts (parent consent is not required to send or receive student information in this scenario).

9. Reach out to parents to make early connections.
Strong, positive parent-school relationships are integral to student success. Get a jumpstart on building relationships with parents of students with disabilities by making contact prior to the start of school to provide important information, establish points of contact, and invite parents to school events.

10. Regularly destroy any exported data to protect student privacy.
The information provided in the application contains personally identifiable information (PII) protected by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). The data are live and will change as student enrollments are updated throughout the summer. Ensure compliance with FERPA and related privacy laws by destroying exported data and any documents containing student PII, once the data is no longer relevant.

Related Content: Office of Data Management and Applications