Jennifer Wolfsheimer is a Senior Program Associate specializing in evaluating special education data and building capacity of state educational agency staff to evaluate data. She also has expertise in dispute resolution, general supervision, and differentiated monitoring and supports under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Wolfsheimer leverages legal training and experience interpreting requirements for students with disabilities to support implementation of statutes, regulations, and best practices that are IDEA-compliant and to support states in improving outcomes for students with disabilities.
Prior to joining WestEd, Wolfsheimer worked for the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP). She facilitated the team carrying out activities related to State Performance Plans/Annual Performance Reports and Determinations. Wolfsheimer was OSEP’s Dispute Resolution Lead and led monitoring activities focused on states’ dispute resolution policies, procedures, and general supervision responsibilities under IDEA.
An expert in policy analysis and its impact on people with disabilities, Wolfsheimer has advocated on behalf of people with disabilities across legal and regulatory spectrums. She has advised on disability issues related to mental health and healthcare, technology, employment discrimination, and domestic violence while serving as Commissioner, Montgomery County, MD, Commission on People with Disabilities; Policy Advisor, U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Disability Employment Policy; independent healthcare policy consultant; and Legal Intern/Extern/Clerk at The Judge David L. Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law, and for protection and advocacy organizations in New York and California.
Wolfsheimer holds a BA in Political Science and Women’s Studies from San Diego State University; an MS in Education, concentration in Disability Policy, from Syracuse University; and a JD from Syracuse University.