What’s ahead for special education in 2011? Special education funding is a “passionate cause” for Rep. John Kline, the new chair of the House Education and the Workforce Committee, notes the National Journal.
Is Kline’s desire to fund special education at the 40 percent level a pie-in-the-sky dream? Should special education be considered as its own animal, or should a debate about special education funding levels be discussed as part of the overall Education Department budget?
Money isn’t the key issue, responds Sandy Kress, who was an education advisor to President George W. Bush. The performance of students with disabilities improved significantly when No Child Left Behind began holding schools accountable for their success. Many who want to provide more funding for special ed also want to let schools off the hook for the academic performance of disabled students. Once again, there will be no consequences for failing to educate special-ed students. “This would be a shameful step backwards for disabled students,” Kress argues.