Why we need special education reform

By James Aycock American schools are giving kids disabilities. It sounds shocking, but it’s true. Kids become disabled by attending school. And that’s why we so badly need special education reform. An estimated 80% of students diagnosed with a specific learning disability are diagnosed as such because they never learned how to read. So says […]

Seattle still struggling to improve special education program

Posted by Lynne K. Varner – All districts struggle to meet the unique needs of special education students, but the Seattle Public Schools has struggled more profoundly and visibly. A Times editorial Thursday calls out a Seattle Public Schools misstep, this time shooting past a self-imposed Sept. 20th deadline to comply with state requirements regarding its special […]

Why New York Needs More Special Education Oversight

Thomas DiNapoli has called for monitoring sped providers.

Contractors in New York State have defrauded the taxpayers of hundreds of millions of dollars in false charges for services that were exaggerated or were never provided. by Barbara Slocum – In a recent article, Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli stated a need for greater special education oversight. One problem mentioned was fraud on the part of […]

A Look at What Kind of Special Ed Director Parents Would Like

A Board of Education Meeting.

by Megan Spicer – Over the course of an hour, 11 parents stood up to tell the Board of Education what they want and expect from the new interim special education director on Thursday, Aug. 8. The most common requirements shared by almost all of the parents was the need for an interim director who […]

In the Future, Every Teacher May be a Special Education Teacher

Special education should be included in all teacher training.

by Thea Sebastian – By this point, statistics about America’s educational woes are fairly ubiquitous. Whether lamenting about our math and science proficiency, particularly compared to emerging powerhouses like South Korea and China, or talking about college readiness and educational inequity, most Americans agree that our system of public education is seriously lacking. And despite […]

Can Chicago Serve the Individual Needs of Students with Disabilities?

Few black than white students with IEPs are mainstreamed in Chicago.

by Federico R. Waitoller – On May 22, the Chicago School Board will decide whether to approve one of the largest mass school closings in U.S. history. The impacts will be felt in different ways by the more than 46,000 mostly black students who’ll be affected. But the action is likely to create a perfect storm […]

Illinois Considers Eliminating Special Ed Limits When Mainstreaming

By Tara García Mathewson – Special education teachers and parents from across the region spoke out against proposed school rule changes during a public hearing hosted by the Chicago board of education. At the same hearing, four administrators spoke in favor of the changes, saying the rules now restrict local districts from making decisions that […]

Judge Rules Against Parents in Special Ed Class Action Lawsuit

The D.C. schools have long struggled to comply with IDEA.

by Zoe Tillman – A judge has reversed the certification of a class in a sprawling lawsuit against the District of Columbia over the provision of special education services, a setback for the plaintiffs more than a year after a judge found the city liable. Writing for the panel, Judge Judith Rogers said  Lamberth failed […]

Sped Charter School Voucher Plan Dropped in Louisiana

Overwhelming opposition to a school-choice bill doomed it from the start. Special education advocates decried the financial limits it would have placed on state spending for special education. Lafayette Rep. Nancy Landry has dropped from consideration this session legislation that would have established a voucher program for children with disabilities to attend regional schools where they could receive specialized […]

Common Core Needs to be Accessible to Students with Special Needs

Some teachers and parents are worried that the transition to common core standards will widen the academic gap for students with disabilities.

by Yasmeen Khan – Integrating Common Core learning standards at the same time that special education reform is taking hold in schools citywide made sense, Corinne Rello-Anselmi said Thursday, despite the obvious challenges. She is the deputy chancellor for students with disabilities and English language learners. Both efforts require a shift in instruction, she said, […]