The back to school special needs segregation special

by Liza Long – But by not integrating children with mental illness into the general school population, we contribute to the ongoing stigma. This week, all my friends are posting Facebook and Instagram pictures of their adorable children, whose forced grins and too-neat clothes suggest that the kids aren’t quite as thrilled as their mothers about […]

More information on cognitive losses in mental illness needs to be available

by Susan Inman – Psychotic disorders are frequently accompanied by significant and disabling cognitive losses. These cognitive difficulties can persist even when other symptoms (delusions, hallucinations) are well controlled by anti-psychotic medications. Well-researched cognitive problems include difficulties with short term and working memory, focusing, sequencing (essential for planning), judgment and problem solving. You may not have […]

Summer program focuses on social skills

by Tim Willert – One by one, dozens of troubled children received colorful capes and masks and assumed new identities. For once, the children — classified as emotionally disturbed by Oklahoma City Public Schools — got to play the hero instead of the villain. Lacking in social skills and prone to outbursts, the children were […]

Special education is in an adjustment period

Assistive technology aides accessibility.

by mathew Lynch – The way that K-12 learners are taught is in rapid flux, particularly when it comes to students in special education programs. According to a report by the Fordham Insititute, special education participation by K-12 students represented 13.1 percent of the nation’s student population in 2010. From 2000 to 2010, students in special […]

The challenges of raising a child with schizophrenia

by Susan Donaldson James – Susan and Michael Schofield have no letup in their grueling day –- 11-year-old Jani is one of the youngest children ever to be treated for schizophrenia, and now her 6-year-old brother Bodhi, though not officially diagnosed with the same disorder, has violent outbursts and self-harming behavior that suggest he might […]

Ethnicity appears to be strong factor in diagnosing learning disabilities

by Ceren Kaysadi – The 2011-2012 Civil Rights Data Collection from the U.S. Department of Education shows four to five times more African-American students in Minneapolis and St. Paul public schools identified with certain disabilities than any other race. According to the 2011 data, an especially large number of African-American students (mostly male) have what […]

State starts program to train special education teachers

More teachers quit special education than enter it.

by Kim McGuire – Over the past four years, Samantha Ovadal has been bitten, hit, kicked and scratched while working as an education assistant at a Maplewood school that serves students with severe emotional and behavioral disorders. Yet Ovadal loves her job, and dreams of becoming a special education teacher. The only things standing in […]

In-district special ed programs help reduce costs

by Lane Lambert – Braintree school officials faced a choice last year. The district had seven elementary-age students with severe disabilities. Some had multiple physical and learning conditions. Others had autism. One still couldn’t speak. “They could have gone out of the district,” special-education director Jeffrey Rubin said, referring to expensive residential schools or other […]

Teacher is retaliated against after advocating for special education students

By Rachel Stockman A Polk County special education teacher filed a federal lawsuit claiming he was harassed and retaliated against after he tried to advocate for children with disabilities in his class. In 2013, Robert Furr won Teacher of the Year from the Georgia Career Technical and Agricultural Education. Not even a year later, Furr […]

The “Keeping All Students Safe Act” would eliminate seclusion in public schools

Restraint across America.

When a high school teen acted up in an Indiana classroom a few years ago, his teachers sent him to an isolated room, where he was left unmonitored for hours. He wasn’t allowed to leave, for any reason, and was forced to urinate on the floor. As punishment, he was dragged to that exact same […]