Special Education

Special Education Column

November 30, 1994 1 min read

At this month’s annual meeting of the National Association of State Directors of Special Education, at least one speaker gave the group kudos for starting to move special education into the school-reform arena.

But the speaker, Cynthia G. Brown, the director of the resource center on educational equity for the Council of Chief State School Officers, highlighted the division in the special-education community over how to amend the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, the landmark 1975 federal law.

“The community as a whole seems to be of two minds,” Ms. Brown said.

“On the one hand, it wants to be an integral part of the standards-based movement, but on the other hand it forcefully resists changes in Congress,” she said.

The I.D.E.A. is slated for reauthorization next year. The special-education directors’ group released a draft reauthorization proposal at the meeting in Grand Rapids, Mich.

It recommends tying the law to the Goals 2000: Educate America Act to focus more on disabled students’ educational outcomes. Goals 2000 encourages all students to reach high academic standards.

Historically, Ms. Brown said, the I.D.E.A. has created a separate school bureaucracy that resists integration with other programs, making it difficult to include students with disabilities in the larger school-reform movement.

Some advocates for children with disabilities have opposed tampering with the I.D.E.A. for fear of losing the civil-rights and educational protections it offers such children.

NASDSE officials announced at the meeting that they will focus more on special-education issues affecting rural areas.

“Children and teachers in rural America probably haven’t gotten the attention they need from our organization,” Martha J. Fields, the executive director, said in an interview.

“There’s been a lot of attention paid to the urban areas and their problems,” she said.

Jerry F. White, the chairman of the American Council of Rural Special Education, said he expects the two groups to work more closely in the future on issues such as distance learning, technology, and teacher training.

Most colleges and universities are not preparing special-education teachers for the realities of rural schools, Mr. White said.

His organization represents more than 500 administrators, teachers, parents, and teacher educators nationwide.

--Lynn Schnaiberg

A version of this article appeared in the November 30, 1994 edition of Education Week as Special Education Column

Events

School & District Management Webinar What's Ahead for Hybrid Learning: Putting Best Practices in Motion
It’s safe to say hybrid learning—a mix of in-person and remote instruction that evolved quickly during the pandemic—is probably here to stay in K-12 education to some extent. That is the case even though increasing
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Mathematics Webinar
Building Equitable Systems: Moving Math From Gatekeeper to Opportunity Gateway
The importance of disrupting traditional American math practices and adopting high-quality math curriculum continues to be essential for changing the trajectory of historically under-resourced schools. Building systems around high-quality math curriculum also is necessary to
Content provided by Partnership for L.A. Schools
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Student Well-Being Webinar
Measuring & Supporting Student Well-Being: A Researcher and District Leader Roundtable
Students’ social-emotional well-being matters. The positive and negative emotions students feel are essential characteristics of their psychology, indicators of their well-being, and mediators of their success in school and life. Supportive relationships with peers, school
Content provided by Panorama Education

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Special Education Whitepaper
A Comprehensive Guide to the IEP Process
Download this guide to learn strategies for bringing together all stakeholders to plan an IEP that addresses the whole child; using relia...
Content provided by n2y
Special Education What Biden's Pick for Ed. Secretary Discussed With Disability Rights Advocates
Advocates for students with disabilities want Biden to address discipline and the effects of COVID-19 on special education.
2 min read
Miguel Cardona, President-elect Joe Biden's nominee for Secretary of Education, speaks after being introduced at The Queen Theater in Wilmington, Del., Wednesday, Dec. 23, 2020, as Biden, right, and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, look on.
Miguel Cardona, President-elect Joe Biden's nominee for Secretary of Education, speaks after being introduced at The Queen Theater in Wilmington, Del., Dec. 23, 2020, as Biden, right, and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, left, look on.
Carolyn Kaster/AP
Special Education Schools Struggled to Serve Students With Disabilities, English-Learners During Shutdowns
The needs of students with IEPs and English-language learners were not often met after the pandemic struck, says a federal report.
3 min read
Young boy wearing a mask shown sheltering at home looking out a window with a stuffed animal.
Getty
Special Education How Will Schools Pay for Compensatory Services for Special Ed. Students?
States’ efforts so far suggest there won’t be enough money to go around for all the learning losses of students with disabilities from COVID-19 school shutdowns.
8 min read
BRIC ARCHIVE
iStock/Getty