Friday, May 27, 2016

Breaking: The Condition of Education 2016 Released #data #statistics

The National Center for Education Statistics of the Institute for Education Sciences has released The Condition of Education: 2016. The 347 page report contains a wealth of data about public education in the United States. You can read the entire report here.  A summary of the highlights are available here.

Here are some excerpts:

"From school years 1990–91 through 2004–05, the number of children and youth ages 3–21 who received special education services increased from 4.7 million, or 11 percent of total public school enrollment, to 6.7 million, or 14 percent of total public school enrollment. Both the number and percentage of students served under IDEA declined from 2004–05 through 2011–12. There was evidence that the number and percentage of students served leveled off in 2012–13 and 2013–14. By 2013–14, the number of students served under IDEA was 6.5 million, or 13 percent of total public school enrollment.
In school year 2013–14, a higher percentage of children and youth ages 3–21 received special education services under IDEA for specific learning disabilities than for any other type of disability. A specific learning disability is a disorder in one or more of the basic psychological processes involved in understanding or using language, spoken or written, that may manifest itself in an imperfect ability to listen, think, speak, read, write, spell, or do mathematical calculations. In 2013–14, some 35 percent of all students receiving special education services had specific learning disabilities, 21 percent had speech or language impairments, and 13 percent had other health impairments (including having limited strength, vitality, or alertness due to chronic or acute health problem such as a heart condition, tuberculosis, rheumatic fever, nephritis, asthma, sickle cell anemia, hemophilia, epilepsy, lead poisoning, leukemia, or diabetes). Students with autism, intellectual disabilities, developmental delays, or emotional disturbances each accounted for between 5 and 8 percent of students served under IDEA. Students with multiple disabilities, hearing impairments, orthopedic impairments, visual impairments, traumatic brain injuries, or deaf-blindness each accounted for 2 percent or less of those served under IDEA. In school year 2013–14, children and youth ages 3–21 served under IDEA as a percentage of total enrollment in public schools differed by race/ethnicity. The percentage of students served under IDEA was highest for American Indian/Alaska Native students (17 percent), followed by Black students (15 percent), White students (13 percent), students of Two or more races (12 percent), Hispanic students (12 percent), Pacific Islander students (11 percent), and Asian students (6 percent). In most racial/ethnic groups, the percentage of children and youth receiving services for specific learning disabilities combined with the percentage receiving services for speech or language impairments accounted for over 50 percent of children and youth served under IDEA. The percentage distribution of various types of special education services received by students ages 3–21 in 2013–14 differed by race/ethnicity. For example, the percentage of students with disabilities receiving services under IDEA for specific learning disabilities was lower among Asian students (22 percent) than among students overall (35 percent). However, the percentage of students with disabilities receiving services under IDEA for autism was higher among Asian students (19 percent) than among students overall (8 percent). Additionally, of students who were served under IDEA, 8 percent of Black students and 7 percent of students of Two or more races, compared to 5 percent of students served under IDEA overall, received services for emotional disturbances. Among children and youth who received services under IDEA, the percentages of American Indian/Alaska Native students (10 percent), Pacific Islander students (8 percent), and students of Two or more races (8 percent) who received services for developmental delays were higher than the percentage of students overall receiving services for developmental delays (6 percent).
Separate data on special education services for males and females are available only for students ages 6–21. Among those 6- to 21-year-olds enrolled in public schools in 2013–14, a higher percentage of males (16 percent) than females (9 percent) received special education services under IDEA. The percentage distribution of students ages 6–21 who received various types of special education services in 2013–14 differed by sex. For example, the percentage of students served under IDEA who received services for specific learning disabilities was higher among female students (44 percent) than among male students (37 percent), while the percentage served under IDEA who received services for autism was higher among male students (11 percent) than among female students (4 percent). 

Educational environment data are available for students ages 6–21 served under IDEA. About 95 percent of children and youth ages 6–21 who were served under IDEA in 2013–14 were enrolled in regular schools. Some 3 percent of students ages 6–21 who were served under IDEA were enrolled in separate schools (public or private) for students with disabilities; 1 percent were placed by their parents in regular private schools; and less than 1 percent each were in separate residential facilities (public or private), homebound or in hospitals, or in correctional facilities. Among all students ages 6–21 who were served under IDEA, the percentage who spent most of the school day (i.e., 80 percent or more of time) in general classes in regular schools increased from 33 percent in 1990–91 to 62 percent in 2013–14. In contrast, during the same period, the percentage of those who spent 40 to 79 percent of the school day in general classes declined from 36 to 19 percent, and the percentage of those who spent less than 40 percent of time inside general classes also declined, from 25 to 14 percent. In 2013–14, the percentage of students served under IDEA who spent most of the school day in general classes was highest for students with speech or language impairments (87 percent). Approximately two-thirds of students with specific learning disabilities (68 percent), visual impairments (65 percent), other health impairments (64 percent), and developmental delays (63 percent) spent most of the school day in general classes. In contrast, 16 percent of students with intellectual disabilities and 13 percent of students with multiple disabilities spent most of the school day in general classes. Data are also available for students ages 14–21 served under IDEA who exited school during school year 2012–13, including exit reason. In 2012–13, approximately 396,000 students ages 14–21 who received special education services under IDEA exited school: almost two-thirds (65 percent) graduated with a regular high school diploma, 14 percent received an alternative certificate,1 19 percent dropped out, 1 percent reached maximum age, and less than one-half of 1 percent died. 
Of the students ages 14–21 served under IDEA who exited school, the percentage who graduated with a regular high school diploma was highest among White students (72 percent) and lowest among Black students (55 percent). The percentage of students served under IDEA who received an alternative certificate was highest among Black students (19 percent) and lowest among American Indian/Alaska Native students (9 percent). The percentage of students served under IDEA who exited special education due to dropping out in 2012–13 was highest among American Indian/Alaska Native students (27 percent) and lowest among Asian students (9 percent). The percentage of students ages 14–21 served under IDEA who graduated with a regular high school diploma in 2012–13 differed by type of disability. The percentage of students ages 14–21 served under IDEA who graduated with a regular high school diploma was highest among students with visual impairments (77 percent) and lowest among those with intellectual disabilities (43 percent). The percentage of students served under IDEA who received an alternative certificate was highest among students with intellectual disabilities (33 percent) and lowest among students with speech or language impairments (9 percent). The percentage of students served under IDEA who dropped out in 2012–13 was highest among students with emotional disturbance (35 percent) and lowest among students with autism (7 percent)." 

Check out this report for all sorts of other education data. 

Monday, May 23, 2016

Weekly Question!

Can a child be too bad for FAPE? See our ongoing series of posts on this blog. #IncarceratedStudents

Friday, May 20, 2016

Incarcerated Students & Special Ed Law Part VI: overview #IncarceratedStudents

OK so as we wind down this series about special ed students who have had an encounter with the criminal law, let's review.

First as to the issue in general, we know that OSEP and other federal agencies are interested in this topic. This means that we should be interested in it too.

Next, as to the teaser question the guidance from one court is that probably a student cannot be too bad for FAPE although students tried as an adult and confined in an adult prison may have their IEP teams make some amendments to their educational plan for security reasons. Maybe we will see more cases along these lines?

Probably the biggest takeaway though is that school officials and IEP teams should take note when a student is arrested or returns from juvenile hall. If the student is not already eligible, does this fact trigger the school district's child find duty? If the student is already on an IEP, should this fact call for a meeting to examine whether the IEP needs to be tweaked.  I predict a hot button issue around these sorts of facts for the foreseeable future.

What's in your crystal ball? Will this be a hot button?

Monday, May 16, 2016

Weekly Question!

Can a child be too bad for FAPE? See our ongoing series of posts on this blog. #IncarceratedStudents

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Incarcerated Students & Special Ed Law- PartV: Can a Student Be Too Bad for FAPE? #IncarceratatedStudents

OK so when we left our hero (a student on an IEP convicted as an adult and sentenced to an adult prison), a hearing officer held that he was not entitled to FAPE because he was such a serious safety and security risk citing §614(d)(7)(A)& (B), and 34 CFR §300.324(D)}. State Correctional Institution Pine Grove (BF) 113 LRP 32792 (SEA Penna 5/1/2013).

But as is so often the case, the decision was appealed to court. The first court decision allowed additional evidence on appeal of his IEP report and evidence of his interactions with prison staff. Buckley v State Correctional Institution – Pine Grove 62 IDELR 206 (MD Penna 1/6/2014).

In the second court decision, the Court reversed the hearing officer and found that the correctional institution denied FAPE to a student by discontinuing all SpEd services. IDEA allows a public agency to modify the IEP of a student if warranted where the student is incarcerated in an adult facility and if it demonstrates a bona fide security interest. {§614(d)(7)(A)& (B), and 34 CFR §300.324(D)} Here the student had 25 incidents of serious misconduct and assault so the prison had a bona fide security interest but it failed to convene the IEPT or to modify the IEP. While “… special education services must yield to legitimate security considerations …(the) program should be revised not annulled in light of this interest.” The court emphasized that it was not holding that the student must be educated outside of his cell. Quoting Brown v Bd of Educ, it is doubtful that a child may reasonably succeed in life without an education. Youth with disabilities are incarcerated at disproportionate rates and are often denied an appropriate education while incarcerated. Court hopes that a meaningful benefit might disrupt the viscous cycle of incarceration for this student

Once again reasonable persons disagree, but based upon this  decision, the law provides that NO a child may not be so bad that he is not entitled to FAPE.

What are your thoughts?
 
 

Monday, May 9, 2016

Weekly Question!

Can a child be too bad for FAPE? See our ongoing series of posts on this blog. #IncarceratedStudents

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

NCES Releases Digest of Education Statistics 2014 #Ed Stats

The National Center for Education Statistics of the Institute of Education Sciences has released the Digest of Education Statistics, 2014 (50th Edition). There is a ton of useful statistical data concerning all aspects of education.  You can review the available materials here. You can peruse the entire 996 page Digest here.

Some fun with numbers from the report's many tables: In 1976-1977 there were 3,604,000 students served under IDEA or  % of students. In the 2012-2013 school year, there were 6,429,000  or 12.9%. In 1976-1977, 26% of special ed children were eligible under the category of intellectual disability, but by 2012-2013, only 6.7 were eligible under that category.(Table 204.30) In the 2007-2008 school year, 10.9% of students in undergraduate programs had disabilities. In 2011-1-2012, the percentage had increased slightly to 11.1%. (Table 311.10). In 2007, the percentage of special education students out of high school for up to six years who were living independently was 35.7%. In 2009 that number had increased to 44.7%. (note period was changed to out of school up to eight years. (Table 504.30)

Here is an excerpt from the report itself:
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), enacted in 1975, mandates that children and youth ages 3–21 with disabilities be provided a free and appropriate public school education. The percentage of total public school enrollment that represents children served by federally supported special education programs increased from 8.3 percent to 13.8 percent between 1976–77 and 2004–05 (table 204.30). Much of this overall increase can be attributed to a rise in the percentage of students identified as having specific learning disabilities from 1976–77 (1.8 percent) to 2004–05 (5.7 percent). The overall percentage of students being served in programs for those with disabilities decreased between 2004–05 (13.8 percent) and 2012–13 (12.9 percent). However, there were different patterns of change in the percentages served with some specific conditions between 2004–05 and 2012–13. The percentage of children identified as having other health impairments (limited strength, vitality, or alertness due to chronic or acute health problems such as a heart condition, tuberculosis, rheumatic fever, nephritis, asthma, sickle cell anemia, hemophilia, epilepsy, lead poisoning, leukemia, or diabetes) rose from 1.1 to 1.6 percent of total public school enrollment, the percentage with autism rose from 0.4 to 1.0 percent, and the percentage with developmental delay rose from 0.7 to 0.8 percent. The percentage of children with specific learning disabilities declined from 5.7 percent to 4.6 percent of total public school enrollment during this period. In fall 2012, some 95 percent of 6- to 21-year-old students with disabilities were served in regular schools; 3 percent were served in a separate school for students with disabilities; 1 percent were placed in regular private schools by their parents; and less than 1 percent each were served in one of the following environments: in a separate residential facility, homebound or in a hospital, or in a correctional facility (table 204.60).


Take a look at this amazing collection of data, and let us know what you think.