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Special Education Department

Special Education Department

Minneapolis Public Schools Special Education Resource Guide

The Special Education Department has collaborated with our Special Education Advisory Council (SEAC) to assemble important information for caregivers and other stakeholders regarding the special education process in our district.  
For information, please explore our 
MPS Special Education Resource Guide 

Mission Statement

The special education department is relentlessly focused on students receiving individualized services and equitable instruction in their least restrictive environment. We are committed to educational evaluations and services that are not predicted by a student’s race.

Our Values

  • Equity, Representation, & Anti-Racism
  • Physical and Emotional Safety & Wellbeing
  • Relationships, Trust & Communication
  • Shared Decision-Making & Voice
  • Transparency & Accountability
  • Evidence-Based Strategies

General Overview

Minneapolis Public Schools offers a wide-range of Special Education programs and services. To receive special education services, a student must first be evaluated and meet state criteria. Once qualified, an Individual Education Plan (IEP) is developed for the student. Programs and services are provided to students and their families beginning at birth through age 21 or completion of a secondary education program. Special education is also available for students who live in Minneapolis that attend nonpublic schools.

Students Served 

In order to qualify for special education services, a student needs to be evaluated and meet eligibility criteria as outlined by the Minnesota Department of Education. In addition, the student needs to show that their disability impacts them in such a way that they have an educational need for special education services.
The recognized disabilities in Minnesota currently are:
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder.
  • Blind or Visually Impaired.
  • Deaf and Blind.
  • Deaf and Hard of Hearing.
  • Developmental Adaptive Physical Education.
  • Developmental Cognitive Disability.
  • Developmental Delay (ages birth through 5).
  • Emotional or Behavioral Disorders.
  • Other Health Disabilities.
  • Physically Impaired.
  • Severely Multiply Impaired.
  • Specific Learning Disability.
  • Speech Language Impairment.
  • Traumatic Brain Injury. 
For more information about how Minneapolis Public Schools serves our students with special needs, explore the menu items down the left side of the page.