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SpEd EDFacts Federal Exiting Categories

SpEd EDFacts Federal Exiting Categories: WISEdash


EDFacts Federal Exiting Categories provide specific categories for students with disabilities (IDEA) who are ages 14-21, who were in special education at the start of a reporting period, who were also not in special education at the end of a reporting period.

This data element is a calculated field (i.e., it is not submitted directly) derived from "Reason Exited Special Education" and "Exit Type" along with various /sSEPA dates.

The table below shows the EDFacts Federal Exiting Category names:


Permitted Value Description

Comments (if any)

GHS Graduated with a regular high school diploma  
GRADAL TDPL Graduated with an alternative diploma  
RC Received a certificate  
RMA Reached maximum age  
MKC Moved, known to be continuing  
TRAN Transferred to regular education  
DROPOUT Dropped out  
D Died  
MISSING Missing Use this category when data are not available


USES: EDFacts Federal Exiting Categories data will be used for multiple data collection, reporting, and accountability purposes, specific to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), section 618. These purposes currently include the reporting of dropout/high school completion/graduation rates, and information system improvement for IDEA purposes. Federally mandated methods of calculating rates currently differ depending on the intended use of these data.


FAQs, Details, and Points to Note


  • Graduated with a Regular High School Diploma: These students exited an educational program through receipt of a high school diploma identical to that for which students without disabilities are eligible. These students met the same standards for graduation as those for students without disabilities. As defined in 34 CFR 300.102(a)(3)(iv), the term regular high school diploma means the standard high school diploma awarded to the preponderance of students in the State that is fully aligned with State standards, or a higher diploma, except that a regular high school diploma shall not be aligned to the alternate academic achievement standards described in section 1111(b)(1)(E) of the ESEA. A regular high school diploma does not include a recognized equivalent of a diploma, such as a general equivalency diploma, certificate of completion, certificate of attendance, or similar lesser credential.

  • Received a Certificate: These students exited an educational program and received a certificate of completion, modified diploma, or some similar document. This includes students who received a high school diploma, but did not meet the same standards for graduation as those students without disabilities. This also includes students receiving any alternative degree that is not fully aligned with the state’s academic standards, such as a certificate or a GED, so long as the student remained continuously enrolled in the secondary education program.

    • GED – Received a certificate includes GED recipients when the state allows the students to receive a GED without dropping out of school (the students are jointly enrolled in secondary education and a GED program).

  • Reached Maximum Age: These students exited special education because of reaching the maximum age for receipt of special education services. This includes students who reached the maximum age and did not receive a diploma.

  • Moved, Known to be Continuing: These students moved out of the catchment area or otherwise transferred to another district and are KNOWN to be continuing in an educational program. There does not need to be evidence that the students are continuing in special education only that the students are continuing in an educational program. This includes students who are in residential drug/alcohol rehabilitation centers, correctional facilities, or charter schools if those facilities operated as separate districts, excluding normal matriculation.\

  • Transferred to Regular Education: These students were served in special education at the start of the reporting period, but at some point during that 12-month period, returned to general (regular) education. These students no longer have an IEP and are receiving all of their educational services from a general (regular) education program. If the parent of a student with a disability revokes consent for special education and related services, the student would be reported in this category. This also includes students who left school to be homeschooled and are no longer receiving any special education services, including related services. (See 34 CFR §300.300(b)(4))

  • Dropped Out: These students were enrolled at the start of the reporting period but were not enrolled at the end of the reporting period and did not exit special education through any of the other means. This includes dropouts, runaways, GED recipients (in cases where students are required to drop out of the secondary educational program in order to pursue the GED certificate), expulsions, status unknown, students who moved but are not known to be continuing in another educational program, and other exiters from special education.

    • GED - In states where students may receive a GED without dropping out of school, these students may be reported as having received a certificate. These are students who were jointly enrolled in secondary education and a GED program. In all other cases, GED recipients should be reported as dropped out.

See also:
For more information, please visit the WISEdash Public Portal - Special Education Indicators Dashboard, About the Data webpage, or the WISEdash for Districts - Year End Completion Snapshot Dashboard, About the Data webpage

To contact the DPI Special Education Team with questions about disability data, you can     submit a Special Education Team Help Ticket, or call: 1 (608) 266-1781.

If you need further assistance, please submit a Help Ticket.
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