RSN-Regional Service Network

CESA #3 - Regional Service Network (RSN)

Wisconsin Special Education Regional Service Network logo

The Wisconsin Statewide Regional Service Network is an Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) discretionary grant that was founded in 1984. The purpose of Regional Service Network (RSN) is to assist local education agencies (LEAs) in improving outcomes for students with disabilities including advancing academic achievement through targeted technical assistance and by providing leadership, ensuring communication and disseminating information from the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction. Services provided through IDEA discretionary grants, including the RSN, are free of charge regardless of CESA membership. The specific project goals for 2016-2017 are as follows:

Advancing Educational Achievement

Improve educational outcomes for students with disabilities by coordinating technical assistance and support to high?need LEAs through collaboration with other discretionary grant staff.

Leadership, Communication, and Information Dissemination

Build Special Education leadership capacity to ensure that Directors of Special Education and other leaders in Special Education in LEAs have the knowledge, skills, and resources to ensure compliance with IDEA and promote best practices for students with disabilities.

Beginning in 2012 RSN Directors roles shifted to support coordinated efforts to drive growth in academic and career achievement for students with disabilities. In 2012-13, RSN Directors began working with districts to target areas of need with respect to Indicator 1 (graduation). During the 2013-14 grant year, RSN Directors, in collaboration with other CESA-based discretionary grant staff, engaged in identifying and supporting districts most in need of improvement in Indicator 3c (Performance on Statewide Assessments in Reading). This collaborative project, known as SOARING (Students with disabilities Outcomes and Achievement Resources IDEA Network Grants), focused on reaching out to highest-need districts within CESA-regions and coordinating discretionary grant efforts to provide a comprehensive system of support. 2016-2017 marks the final year of the SOARING project and RSN are focusing on preparing schools to sustain efforts moving forward.

Project Goals for 2016-17:

Goal 1: The RSN will provide leadership and technical assistance services to all LEAs within the CESA region in meeting the state and federal requirements associated with the provision of special education and related services to students with disabilities.

Goal 2: The RSN will assist the LEA improve their performance and its impact on Wisconsin's data on the State Performance Plan (SPP) following the Wisconsin Personnel Development Model (WPDM) as well as provide professional development activities for DPI special education initiatives.

Goal 3: The RSN will provide regular ongoing communication from DPI to all LEA special education leadership through phone, emails, and meetings.

State Initiatives: The Statewide RSN Network Supports Wisconsin 's Systems Change Initiatives

  • WI Assistive Technology Loan Center (ATLC)
  • WI Statewide Parent Educator Initiative (WSPEI)
  • WI State Transition Initiative (WSTI)
  • Culturally Responsive Education for All: Training and Enhancement (CREATE)
  • Secondary Transition/Post-School Outcomes
  • Positive Behavioral Intervention and Supports (PBIS)
  • WI Special Education Mediation System (WSEMS)
  • Early Childhood Regional Projects
  • Professional Development Model
  • WI Response to Intervention (RtI) Center




Jim Nelson
RSN Director

Kate Hennessy
Program Assistant



Last Updated: 1/9/17
  • CESA 3
  • 1300 Industrial Drive,
  • Fennimore, WI 53809
  • Phone: 608.822.3276
  • Fax: 608.822.3828