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The National Center for Systemic Improvement (NCSI) is a multiyear cooperative agreement funded by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) (2019-2024). NCSI plays a major role in helping states achieve a national vision of Results-Driven Accountability (RDA) for special education programs.
The Need for a National Center for Systemic Improvement
RDA represents a significant shift in state accountability from a focus on compliance and ensuring access to education services to a focus on measurable and meaningful outcomes in learning and development for students with disabilities.
Successfully navigating the shift that “moves the needle” on measurable outcomes requires states to accurately assess needs, priorities, and capacities of program infrastructures; engage in strategic, collaborative, and integrated improvement planning; and implement carefully selected evidence-based practices. NCSI was created to help states meet these needs.
NCSI Conceptual Framework
Targeted Outcomes for the NCSI
- 1. Increased capacity of SEAs to align with broader general education initiatives to ensure ESSA and IDEA implementation best supports the needs of CWD;
- 2. Increased capacity of SEAs to effectively implement their general supervision systems that serve to improve results for CWD, while maintaining compliance with the IDEA;
- 3. Increased capacity of SEAs to effectively implement, evaluate, and revise (as necessary) their SSIPs and ensure progress toward meeting their SIMR;
- 4. Increased effectiveness of SEAs in meaningfully and authentically engaging diverse State (including State-level partnerships) and local stakeholders in ways that will support the effective implementation of ESSA and IDEA;
- 5. Increased capacity of SEAs to support LEAs in selecting and implementing EBPs within frameworks (e.g., MTSS, positive behavioral interventions and supports (PBIS), response to intervention (RTI), and others);
- 6. Increased capacity of SEAs to fully engage families, including partnerships with OSEP- funded parent centers and the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE) Statewide Family Engagement Centers in the implementation of systemic improvement efforts;
- 7. Increased capacity of SEAs to deliver effective TA to LEAs using an aligned TA model grounded in implementation and improvement sciences through collaboration with OSEP- funded TA centers; and
- 8. Improved access to objective information for families and youth with disabilities on the range of quality educational options & supports.