Skip to main content
California Department of Education Logo

Common Core Resources for Special Education

Resources and guidelines on the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for the Special Education Community.

Educational standards describe what students should know and be able to do in each subject in each grade. In California, the State Board of Education decides on the standards for all students, from kindergarten through high school. Since 2010, 45 states have adopted the same standards for English and math. These standards are called the Common Core State Standards (CCSS). Having the same standards helps all students get a good education, even if they change schools or move to a different state. Teachers, parents, and education experts designed the standards to prepare students for success in college and the workplace. For details regarding the CCSS for all students visit the main CCSS Web page.

This site offers resources and guidelines on what the CCSS and the new tests will mean for California students in the Special Education Community.

California Standards

The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for English and math define what students need to learn at each grade level. They provide a chance to improve access to quality content standards for students with disabilities.



Parents and Students

  • Assessment Principles and Guidelines for ELLs with Disabilities External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF)
    Written by Martha Thurlow, Kristin Liu, Jenna Ward, and Laurene Christensen, this document looks at improving the validity of assessment results for English language learners with disabilities.

  • Parent Guides to Student Success External link opens in new window or tab.
    The National PTA offers Parent Guides to Student Success—11 guides that reflect the CCSS and that are written specifically for parents. Individual guides are available for grades K–8; two guides are available for grades 9–12, one for English language arts/literacy and one for mathematics.

  • Council of Great City Schools - Parent Roadmaps to the CCSS External link opens in new window or tab.
    These roadmaps offer guidance to parents about what their children will be learning and how they can support that learning, in grades K-8.

  • Consejo de Escuelas de las Grandes Ciudades – Guía para padres sobre los estándares de CCSS External link opens in new window or tab.
    Guías para padres cuales dan información sobre los temas académicos que sus estudiantes van a aprender en los grados K - 8. Estas guías están escritas por grado y dan información sobre el aprendizaje de matemáticas y Íngles que los estudiantes van a aprender (Spanish Parent Roadmaps to the Common Core Standards).

  • Spotlight on the CCSS – What do parents need to know? External link opens in new window or tab.
    What do parents need to know about the Common Core State Standards (CCSS)? How will they affect teaching and assessing mathematics and English language arts? What are the benefits and what can parents do to prepare for the CCSS? These and other questions are answered in the March 2011 “Spotlight on the Common Core State Standards”—a series published by Education Northwest to keep regional stakeholders informed about this important initiative.

  • A parent’s guide to the Common Core Standards External link opens in new window or tab.

Other Resources

Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS)

A MTSS is a framework for serving all students that supports the systematic provision of interventions directly related to students’ needs. The needs to be addressed are determined by consistent monitoring of each student’s unique learning progression. A successful MTSS framework supports all students through high-quality and universally designed general education instruction at Tier 1 and more-intensive interventions at Tiers II and III, including universal screening, progress monitoring, flexible mobility between tiers, problem-solving teams, and parent input.

Instructional Supports for Learning

Instructional supports for learning based on the principles of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) foster student engagement by presenting information in multiple ways and promote equal opportunities to learn for all students.

Instructional Accommodations

Instructional accommodations provide many pathways to learning and consist of strategies that consider each individual’s unique strengths, needs and learning preferences within the existing classroom structures. Accommodations change materials and procedures allowing students to learn within the framework of the CCSS, but do not change the standards.

Assistive Technology

Assistive technology (AT) is technology used by individuals with disabilities in order to perform functions that might otherwise be difficult or impossible. AT devices and services along with accessible instructional materials (AIM), aid in access to the general education curriculum and the CCSS for all students.

Set of Webinars from the Maryland Assistive Technology Network online External link opens in new window or tab.

Questions:   Kristen Brown | | 916-445-1064
Last Reviewed: Tuesday, August 14, 2018
Recently Posted in Special Education
  • FMTA Consultant Assignments by Region (updated 22-Jan-2020)
    The Focused Monitoring and Technical Assistance (FMTA) Consultants are assigned geographically and by quality assurance activity to align with the eleven California County Superintendents Educational Services Association (CCSESA) regions.
  • WAI State Advisory Meeting January 14, 2020 (added 31-Dec-2019)
    WorkAbility I (WAI) State Advisory Committee Meeting Agenda.