Under Section 618 of The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act 2004 (IDEA 2004), States are required to collect and examine data to determine if significant disproportionality based on race and ethnicity is occurring in the State and the public education agencies (PEAs) of the state with respect to:
- the identification of children as children with disabilities, including the identification of children as children with disabilities in accordance with a particular impairment;
- the placement in particular educational settings of such children; and
- the incidence, duration, and type of disciplinary actions, including suspensions and expulsions.
The State has moved to a Risk Ratio method to determine the likelihood of overrepresentation of a group when compared to another group. Arizona defines significant disproportionality as a rate of greater than or equal to 3.0 within a group compared to another group. If the ratio is greater than or equal to 3.0 for three consecutive years, the PEA is significantly disproportionate. PEAs that do not meet minimum cell size (10) are exempt from calculation. PEAs that do not meet the minimum n-size (30) are calculated using the alternate risk ratio.