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The Student Annual Needs Determination Inventory (SANDI) is a specially designed comprehensive summative and formative assessment for students with intellectual disabilities (ID). Created by the Riverside County Office of Education in California, the SANDI provides access to grade-level new state standards aligned to targeted critical instructional skills. Intended for use nationally and internationally, the SANDI features subtests in Reading, Writing, Communication, Math, Fine Motor, Gross Motor, Vocational Education and Community, Adaptive Daily Living, and Science (aligned for Next Generation Science Standards). This innovative assessment quickly assists teachers and IEP teams in identifying areas of need, aligns need areas to new state standards, guides IEP goal writing, and ensures access to standards-based instruction through evidence-based best practices.

Benefits of the SANDI

  • Consistent district-wide system implements high expectations for effective programs for students with ID from Preschool through Transition
  • Creates an electronic portfolio for each student, capturing data across time to meet Educational Benefit
  • Assesses all Present Levels of Performance on IEP
  • Identifies each student's strengths and areas of need, per federal law
  • Prioritizes student need area and targets IEP goals across all subtests
  • Guides writing of standards-based IEP goals
  • Generates student Standards Reports, showing proficiency on specific state standards
  • Supports teacher access to relevant student data to drive standards-based instruction
  • Consistently and accurately measures incremental progress of all students
  • Mirrors general education access to data-based summative and formative assessment for all students and teachers!


We love the SANDI! We have been assessing our students in our Moderate/Severe programs using the SANDI for 5 years. Our teachers appreciate the simplicity of the process and the detailed information provided. The assessment outcomes guide their instruction, as well as provide important information for Present Levels and Goals.

Deborah Geiger
Director of Special Education
Santa Barbara County Education Office

For our students on alternate assessment, the SANDI has been the perfect tool for teachers to utilize when determining student present levels based on standards. I love the feature that demonstrates a student's instructional grade level standard paired with a standard at the student's true grade level. This information has aided development of standards-aligned IEPs for this population of students where it is typically more difficult to correlate grade-level content. The prompt level rubric embedded into the SANDI enables teachers to show progress in areas where small steps equal huge success for students with significant cognitive disabilities! As a district level administrator, I believe the SANDI has helped us focus instruction in academic areas, assisting teachers with instructional grouping, lesson planning, and progress monitoring.

Deanna Parish, Curriculum Coordinator
Department of Exceptional Children Services
Charleston County Office of Education, SC

The SANDI/FAST has helped my teachers get a clear picture of where their students are functionally and then allowed them to align their IEP goals to state standards. It has truly shifted how we assess our students!

Diana Lynn, Principal
Friendship School-San Diego County Office of Education

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