State Education Department
Preschool Handicapped Education
Program (Follow-Up Review) The preschool handicapped education
program was created in 1989 to provide special educational services to three and four-year
olds who are diagnosed as having certain handicapping conditions. The program is
administered by school districts and counties, and is overseen by the State Education
In our prior audit report 93-S-23, we examined the reasons for the steep increase in program
costs, which exceed $500 million annually. We determined that much of the cost increase
could be attributed to an increase in the number of children who were diagnosed as speech
impaired. We concluded that some of these diagnoses may not have been appropriate and
children were often placed in costly institutional programs when less costly noninstitutional
programs may have been just as effective. In our follow-up review, we found that, largely
because of recent legislative changes, progress has been made in addressing the problems
described in our prior audit report.
For a complete copy of Report 96-F-31 click here.
For a copy of the 90-day response click here.