Data Makes High School Outcomes of Special Education Students Visible

The Washington State Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS), in conjunction with the Research and Data Analysis Division (RDA), published a report detailing the experience of special education students as they transitioned from high school to adult life. Students with developmental disabilities can receive specialized transition services through the DSHS Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA) and the DSHS Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR). Results show that the majority of these students completed their high school education (78 percent) and one third had at least some college. Moreover, about half of the students were employed or attending college within six years after entering 12th grade. Additionally, DDA clients that were also recipients of DVR services were more likely to be connected to work or school. This report demonstrates that administrative data helps to illustrate which services most benefit special education students and result in successful high school outcomes.

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