Phase I (Sampling and Survey Collection): September 2010 – February 2018;
Phase II (Administrative Records Collection): September 2015 – September 2025
Phase I: $24,243,405; Phase II: $8,662,009
ED-IES-10-C-0073 (Phase I); ED-IES-15-C-0046 (Phase II)
Mathematica Policy Research
University of Minnesota, Institute of Community Integration
Despite improvements over time, students with disabilities continue to face challenges in graduating and achieving other milestones towards independence after high school. The federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) seeks to address these challenges by requiring schools to provide the supports students need to complete high school and pursue postsecondary education and work. This study will provide an updated national picture of students' paths through high school and beyond, as well as measure the progress youth with an individualized education program (IEP) have made since the most recent reauthorization of IDEA in 2004. The study will also provide the first direct comparisons of the in-school experiences and outcomes of high-school aged youth with and without an IEP.
This descriptive study includes a nationally representative sample of over 400 districts and about 21,000 students. During Phase I of the study, survey data were collected in 2012–2013 from approximately 12,000 youth ages 13–21 and their parents, of which about 10,000 are students with IEPs representing each of the federal disability categories. The surveys asked about students' background characteristics, health, functional abilities, and engagement in school, the academic supports they receive, and their expectations for and steps to achieve transitions beyond high school.
The current Phase II of NLTS 2012 follows the students through high school and beyond, relying on administrative data collected by the Department and other agencies. The study obtained high school course-taking and completion information from school district records (completed in 2022) and postsecondary enrollment information from the Department's Federal Student Aid (FSA) records and the National Student Clearinghouse (NSC) (collected in 2022–2023). Administrative data will be linked with the 2012–2013 survey data to examine key steps in high school course-taking and completion, and youth's experiences with college and training.
Three related report volumes describing the survey information collected have been released (two on March 28, 2017 and the third on February 7, 2018). A brief summarizing the key findings from across the three volumes was released on May 15, 2018. Publications are listed below. The next product from this study is expected in 2024 and will be announced on https://ies.ed.gov/ncee/.
A restricted-use file containing de-identified sampling and 2012–2013 survey data is available for the purposes of replicating study findings and secondary analysis.
The May 2018 brief summarizing key findings from the Phase I data collection about students' experiences in high schools includes:
Key findings will be updated when subsequent reports are released.