Are you a parent of a child suffering with autism or any other disability that is frustrated by the special education system? Federally funded special education programs in New York City are especially designed for students with disabilities to receive special education services. There are many children who still depend on the individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), to help them get the services that they need to live a fulfilled life.
Like any parent of a child with a disability knows that much improvement needs to be made to the special education system. Here are the 6 ways which are needed to raise the special education system: More Training Resources: There should be more available parent training and resources to pay for the training! Parent trainings are available but some parents do not attend these because of the cost they incur. Parents must realize their rights under IDEA in order to be efficient advocates for their child. Improved diagnosis: Diagnosis should be improved by having a better eligibility process. Many children with disabilities are told that they do not have a disability, hence are not eligible for special education services. This really hurts children with disabilities and may it may ruin their lives forever! Parents often do not even know that they can offend schools opinion! The eligibility process should be made more children friendly! Effective Enforcement of IDEA: IDEA should be effectively enforced, to include the withholding of funds from states and school districts, which are continually non obedient! There is no existence of IDEA basically. It is the responsibility of federal government’s to enforce IDEA to the states, and it is the states responsibility to enforce IDEA to local school districts. Neither work very much in this area. Enforcement without maintenance of funds will not work. Focus on Outcomes: Outcomes of special education must be focused so that all children will be ready for post school learning and independent living! Only 55% of children with disabilities graduated from high school in 2006-2007, in comparison to over 70% of children without disabilities graduated from high school. This will bound the children’s ability to go to college or get a job, which will affect in their rest of their lives! Expectation must be kept high: Special education personnel must lay down realistic high expectations for all children with disabilities. It has been said from the beginning that school districts expectations of children with disabilities are too low. School authorities and parents must believe that children can be successful in their lives, if they are given a proper education while keeping their expectations high. Improvement in Federal Funding of IDEA: The current estimates tell that the federal government only pays about 17% of per pupil costs for special education. The federal government needs to put their money where their mouth is, and fund IDEA completely. All parents can engage in advocating for improving special education system. Report your state and federal representatives and see how much they support you, in this process. Children with disabilities deserve to entertain a proper education and live their lives to the fullest!