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LEA Grants Funding Formula

Allocation process for IDEA, Part B, Sections 611 and 619 subgrants to LEAs in 2015-16.

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Amendments of 1997 created a new funding formula for Part B, Sections 611 and 619, subgrants to local educational agencies (LEAs). The Section 619 change took effect immediately; the Section 611 change took effect when the national IDEA appropriation exceeded $4,924,672,000. The permanent funding formula took effect in 2000–01. Subsequently, California no longer calculates IDEA grants strictly on a per-pupil basis.

Funding Formula

The permanent formula requires a three-component calculation for the total amount statewide. Each Special Education Local Plan Area (SELPA) grant award is determined according to this formula. The three major data components of the formula are:

  1. Base Amount: 1999 California Special Education Management Information System (CASEMIS), Special Education Enrollment, ages 3–21
  2. Population Amount: October 2014 California Longitudinal Pupil Achievement System (CALPADS) the Public School Enrollment, K–12, and October 2014 Private School Enrollment, K–12
  3. Poverty Amount: October 2014 California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to Kids (CalWORKs) Free and Reduced Meal Count, K–12

Note: Section 611 base amount is calculated using 1999 CASEMIS. Section 619 base amount is calculated using 1997 CASEMIS. The Section 611 statewide base amount remains the same at $323,428,031.

At the statewide level, the base amount per SELPA is calculated by dividing the statewide pupil count for ages 3 through 21 from the December 1, 1999, CASEMIS into the statewide base amount then proportionately distributed to each SELPA based on its 1999 CASEMIS pupil count. This amount is the base amount for each SELPA and is fixed for subsequent years. Adjustments in the base amount occur when a new SELPA is created, one or more SELPAs are combined, or its geographic or administrative boundaries change. Any proposed changes to local plans that affect SELPA configurations must address the reallocation of the base amounts.

Upon notice of the federal award and the approved State Budget Act, the formula requires the base amount to be subtracted from the approved total. Of this amount, 85 percent must be distributed on a pro-rata basis to LEAs according to public and private elementary and secondary school enrollment, and 15 percent on a pro-rata basis to LEAs according to the number of children in LEAs living in poverty.

Budget Act Appropriations

Each SELPA’s total grant is allocated based on the age and institutional groupings identified in the State Budget Act in Item 6100-161-0890, Schedule (1). The enacted budget must align with the federal formula. The 2015–16 amount allocated is $1,086,218,000.

Individuals with Disabilities Education Act Formula Chart
Schedules Amount
2015–16 State Legislative Approved Allocated Award $ 1,086,218,000
2015–16 Federal Allocation: California’s Base Amount $ 323,428,031
Remaining Amount to be allocated as follows $ 762,789,969
85 percent Population Amount $ 648,371,474
15 percent Poverty Amount $ 114,418,495

For specific SELPA grant award amounts, go to the CDE Funding Web page and enter the keywords “special education."

Questions:   Special Education Division, Administrative Services Unit | 916- 323-1323
Last Reviewed: Tuesday, March 15, 2016
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