Federal and state officials collect data about the characteristics of students with disabilities and certain outcomes for those students, but little is known about the quality of education they receive, according to a report from the Editorial Projects in Education Research Center.
The Research Center, part of the same nonprofit organization that publishes Education Week, last week released the report, which focuses on high school students with disabilities. Such students as a group have lower graduation rates, lower academic-achievement rates, and higher discipline rates than their peers who are not in special education.
Little information, however, is collected in a systematic way on what services those students receive and the effectiveness of those services, said Christopher B. Swanson, the report’s author. The field requires “a concerted and broad-based effort” to examine the process and practice of special education, the report says.
A version of this article appeared in the November 12, 2008 edition of Education Week