Twenty years after a disabled student filed suit seeking access to an equal education, the Los Angeles Unified school district has made “considerable” progress in making court-ordered improvements to its special education programs, says a report released last week.
The district has met all but two of the 18 performance-based outcomes mandated in a consent decree negotiated in the class action that accused LAUSD of violating special education and civil-rights laws.
The goal of educating more disabled students in traditional settings is expected to be met next year, according to the court-appointed monitor overseeing the effort.
The report lauded the district for reducing enrollment at its special education centers by almost 25 percent, putting it on track to hit its goal of a 33 percent drop by next year.
It raised concerns about the feasibility of achieving the final outcome, which is ensuring that special education students receive services like mental-health counseling or speech therapy as often and as long as they’re supposed to.
A version of this article appeared in the October 30, 2013 edition of Education Week as Los Angeles Moves Closer to Meeting Spec. Ed. Targets