As you participate in your child’s special education process, you may feel that everyone has started speaking in a foreign language during meetings. While it may seem like a foreign language, it is a language of initials (acronyms). The complete list of special education and disability acronyms is below.

Knowledge is power

A – Acronyms

AAC = Alternative Augmentative Communication

ABA = Applied Behavioral Analysis

ADA = Americans with Disabilities Act

ADD/ADHD =Attention Deficit/Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

ADLs = Activities of Daily Living

APE = Adaptive Physical Education

ASD | Autism Spectrum Disorders

ASL | American Sign Language

AT | Assistive Technology

AYP | Adequate Yearly Progress

B – Acronyms

BD | Behavioral Disorder

BIP | Behavioral Intervention Plan

BOE | Board of Education

C – Acronyms

CBA | Curriculum Based Assessment

CCSS | Common Core State Standards

CDA | Child Development Associate

CD | Cognitive Delay

CF | Cystic Fibrosis

COTA | Certified Occupational Therapist Assistant

CP | Cerebral Palsy

CST | Child Study Team

D- Acronyms

DB | Deaf-Blind

DD | Developmental Delay

DOE | Department of Education

DoH | Department of Health

DPH | Due Process Hearing Officer

DS | Down Syndrome

DSM | Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders by the American Psychiatric Association

E- Acronyms

ECE | Early Childhood Education

EBD | Emotional Disturbance

EHDI | Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Program

EI | Early Intervention

ESD | Extended School Day

ESEA | Elementary and Secondary Education Act

ESL | English as a Second Language

ESY or EYS | Extended School Year or Extended Year Services

F – Acronyms

FAPE | Free Appropriate Public Education

FAS | Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

FBA | Functional Behavioral Assessment

FERPA | Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act

FM | Focused Monitoring

G and H – Acronyms

GE | General Education

GT | Gifted and Talented

HI | Hearing Impaired

HQT | Highly Qualified Teacher

I – Acronyms

IA | Instructional Assistant

IAES | Interim Alternative Educational Setting

ID | Intellectual Disabilities

IDEA | Individuals with Disabilities Education Act

IEE | Individualized Educational Evaluation

IEP | Individualized Education Program

IFSP | Individualized Family Service Plan

IQ | Intelligence Quotient

ITP | Individualized Transition Plan

L,M and N – Acronyms

LD | Learning Disability

LEA | Local Education Agency

LRE | Least Restrictive Environment

MD | Muscular Dystrophy

MD or MH | Multiple Disabilities or Multiply Handicapped

MMR | Mildly Mentally Retarded **

Mod MR | Moderately Mentally Retarded **

MR | Mental Retardation **

NCLB | No Child Left Behind Act (Elementary and Secondary Education Act)

NEA | National Education Association

NECTAC | National Early Childhood and Technical Assistance Center

O – Acronyms

OCD | Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

ODD | Oppositional Defiant Disorder

OHI | Other Health Impairment

OI | Orthopedic Impairment

O & M | Orientation and Mobility Services

OT | Occupational Therapy

P and R – Acronyms

PALS | Peer-Assisted Learning System

PARCC | Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers

Part B | Special Education – School – Aged Children

Part C | Special Education – Birth – Two Year’s Old

PASS | Plan for Achieving Self-Support

PBS | Positive Behavioral Supports

PD | Physical Disability

PDD | Pervasive Developmental Disorder

PEI | Spanish acronym for the Individualized Education Program (Plan Educativo Individualizado)

PLEP or PLP | Present Level of Educational Performance or Present Level of Performance

PP | Paraprofessional

PS | Preschool

PT | Physical Therapy

RDA | Results-Driven Accountability

RS | Related Services

RTI | Response to Intervention

S – Acronyms

SA | Self-Assessment

SAS | Supplementary Aids and Services

SAT | Student Assistance Team

SB | Spina Bifida

SE | Special Education

Section 504 | Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act

SED | Serious Emotional Disturbance

SI | Sensory Integration

SLP | Speech Language Pathologist

SLD | Specific Learning Disability

SLI | Speech/Language Impairment

SLP | Speech/Language Pathologist

SSDI | Social Security Disability Income

SSI | Supplemental Security Income

T to Z – Acronyms

TBI | Traumatic Brain Injury

TDD | Telecommunication Devices for the Deaf

TS | Tourette Syndrome

TWWIIA | Ticket to Work and Work Incentives Improvement Act

USDOE | United States Department of Education

VI | Visual Impairment

Voc Ed | Vocational Education

VR | Vocational Rehabilitation

Until October 2010, IDEA used the term “mental retardation.”  In October 2010, Rosa’s Law was signed into law by President Obama.  Rosa’s Law changed the term to be used in future to “intellectual disability.” The definition of the term itself  did not change, only the use of “intellectual disability” instead of “mental retardation.”