Johnny Key

Commissioner of Education

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Special Education

Within the Division of Learning Services, the Special Education Unit works in collaboration with Local School Districts, Educational Service Cooperatives, and other State Agencies to ensure that all children with disabilities (ages 3 to 21) in Arkansas receive a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) as outlined in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). The Special Education Unit is committed to improving educational results for students with disabilities through statewide leadership, support, and service to schools, educators, students, families, and other stakeholders.

  • Responsibilities include:
    • Ensuring compliance with program and fiscal requirements of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and related state laws and regulations;
    • Professional development and technical assistance outreach to improve special education programs;
    • Supporting efforts to ensure special educators are adequately prepared to meet the needs of children with disabilities;
    • Management of federally required data reporting and analysis;
    • Administration and oversight of state and local special education annual applications/budgets and related expenditures; and
    • Maintaining an effective system for dispute resolution.
CIRCUIT Mediation, Facilitated IEPs, Hearings, Complaints Monitoring
MySped Resource Paperwork Reduction Families
Paraprofessionals Policy/Regulations Presentations
Public Reporting Special Education Forms Response to Intervention (RTI)
Standards-Based IEPs Teacher Recruitment and Retention Teachers
Technical Assistance Providers Technical Assistance Resources  


For more information, please contact:

Matt SewellAssociate Director of Special Education
Arkansas Department of Education
Division of Learning Services
1401 West Capitol Avenue, Suite 450
Little Rock, AR 72201
Phone: 501-682-4221

State Standards

Learn more about the standards that define the knowledge and skills Arkansas students should have in order to be ready for college and careers.

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Licensure & Certification

Find critical information about renewing Arkansas educator licenses, adding areas of licensure, licensing by reciprocity from other states, background checks and more.

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