Department of Defense Education Activity

Special Education Management System

User Guide

The DoDEA Special Education User Guide is designed to assist all special education personnel in the management of confidential student information. This guide explains how personnel can:

  • Enroll students in the special education program,
  • Create assessment plans, eligibility reports and determine eligibility
  • Use workflow checklists as a guide through the special education process,
  • Develop initial Individual Education Programs (IEPs) from transfers or initial referrals,
  • Update IEPs including modifications, annual, and Triennial reviews, or
  • Provide special education services to students.

Account Management / Access

The District Student Information System – Educational Technologist (SIS-ET) is responsible for establishing and managing Aspen-SPED user accounts. Local school personnel should contact the District Office to request an account to be established / modified with the appropriate user role. The roles are:

Case Study Committee Chair (CSC-Chair)
  • New Referrals
  • Incoming DoDEA-IEPs
  • Incoming Non-DoDEA IEPs
  • Creating Queries
  • Reports
Service Provider
  • Annual review
  • Triennial review
  • Modification
  • Progress Report
  • Creating Queries
  • Reports
CSC Clerk / Assessor Clerk
  • Data entry: IEP, eligibility, progress reports
  • Generate invitations
  • Print all documents
  • Read all documents
  • Creating Queries
  • Reports
District / Area SPED
  • View all documents
  • Creating Queries
  • Reports
  • Read all access
  • Creating Queries
  • Reports

Using the DoDEA Aspen-SPED Module

Aspen is a complete data management tool that is flexible enough to help you:

  • Use a checklist to track steps as they are completed in the process.
  • Stay in compliance with DoDEA special education policy.
  • Create Aspen-SPED forms which look and print like our current DoDEA standard forms.
  • Query and display data across students' IEPs and forms.
  • Access reports with student specific information such as service delivery or accommodations content.

In the Special Education view (refer back to changing views section), there frequently is more than one way to complete a task, but users should complete tasks, whenever possible, through the Workflow, or checklist, that automatically begins when you enroll a student in Special Education or create a draft IEP. Each workflow guides you through the steps to complete a process. DoDEA Aspen-SPED has four main processes:

  1. Enroll in Special Education Process
    • Initial Referral workflow: Initially referring a student to and enrolling the student in the special education program.
    • Transfer from Non-DoDEA workflow: Transferring a student with an active IEP from a Non-DoDEA district.
  2. Renewing IEP Process
    • Review IEP (Annual): Renewing a completed IEP, usually after the first year.
    • Re-evaluation (Triennial): Re-evaluating an IEP on a predefined schedule, usually every three years, to determine continued eligibility for special education services.
    • Transfer DoDEA: Transfer of data for a student coming from another DoDEA school with information already available in Aspen.
  3. Amend IEP Process
    • Modification (Amendment IEP): Revising and modifying an active IEP including students needing additional assessments after eligibility.
  4. Progress Report Process
    • Documenting student progress for goals identified in a completed active IEP.


To create workflows:


  1. Click on the IEP Tab.
  2. Click Options and indicate the desired workflow. Specific details for each workflow are listed later in this guide.


The different workflows may be accessed by clicking either:

  • Enroll in Special Education
  • Renew IEP
  • Amend IEP
  • Prepare Progress Reports


Special Education Processes

The flowchart located on the next page identifies Aspen's functionality and the workflow process. The major IEP functions are listed in bold at the top of the page in green and the workflows for those operations are listed below each of the 4 phases. The following is a general breakdown of the major steps most users complete in Aspen SPED:

  • Enrolling a student into the Special Education view
  • Transferring data for students coming from another DoDEA school
  • Creating an Assessment plan or eligibility report for an initial or re-evaluation
  • Creating and implementing an IEP
  • Reviewing and renewing the IEP
  • Amending (Modifying) an IEP
  • Preparing progress reports


Student Special Education Status




In addition to the school enrollment status, a student that is enrolled in the Special Education view also has a special education status. As you update information on a student’s special education workflow, the system automatically updates the student’s special education status.



To see a student’s status, click on the Student tab and the special Ed.
Status is displayed for all students.

The four student special education statuses are:

  • The student is enrolled in special education, but does not have an active IEP.The student has a draft IEP currently in progress.
  • A teacher or parent has concerns about a student and student will possibly go through the testing process
  • When a student has a Referred status, special education users can edit the student's draft IEP.
  • The student is in the process of being considered for special education services, but the IEP is not active.
  • The student has been referred and tested, but has been determined to be not eligible for special education services at this time.
  • The student has gone through the testing process and is eligible for special education services.
  • The student has an active IEP and is receiving services.
Exited (Inactive)
  • The student does not have an active IEP. The student might have exited the special education process because the student withdrew from the school, graduated, aged out, or the student or parent requested the student no longer receive special education services.

IEP Status

Although a student can have only one active IEP, Aspen-SPED maintains a historical record of all student IEPs to include those previously completed.

The four IEP statuses are:

(Amendment Draft) An IEP that is currently in the process of being completed and is not active.
Active An IEP that has been signed and implemented and is being used by teachers. This is considered “complete” or “locked.”
Previous A former IEP that is no longer active.
Discarded An IEP that had been worked on, was saved, but was not completed. It may have been started by mistake for the wrong student or the parents decided to not implement it.

Note: District personnel must override the IEP status to assign it the Discarded status if there is no workflow connected to the IEP.

Directions for completing the workflows and using the Aspen Special education module are available in the pdf document shown in this section of the SIS guide. Please remember to use the Aspen support email in your district if you have questions or problems related to Aspen SPED.