The relationship between referral and special education outcome was investigated in a state where students are referred by category of handicapping condition. Of specific interest was the congruence between categories for which students were referred and eventual placements. Results indicated that 72% of the students referred were placed in some form of special education and that most were placed in the special education category for which they were referred. Variations in the congruence between referral and outcome as a function of the person submitting the referrals were relatively minor, except for parents, for whom 79% of the referred students were not placed in special education. Implications of the results for special education decision making are discussed.