Students With Disabilities Aim For A College Degree, But Often Get Stuck, reports Joy Resmovits in the Huffington Post.
If the U.S. is to lead the world in college graduates by 2020 — President Obama’s — more students with disabilities must go to college and earn degrees, said Sen. Tom Harkin at a committee hearing on the higher education act. “We need to understand the barriers students with disabilities face, and the services and supports that facilitate their success.”
Eighty percent of high school students with disabilities say they want to go to college, but only 60 percent enroll and even fewer complete a credential, said Harkin, who co-authored the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Students have trouble making the transition to college, where they need to become their own advocates, said Melissa Emrey-Arras, director of education, workforce and income security at the Government Accountability Office.
Many don’t ask for help, reports Matt Krupnick. They want to go it alone.
Just a quarter of students who received help for their disabilities in high school acknowledge in college that they need the same assistance, according to the National Center for Learning Disabilities.
And while 94 percent of high school students with learning disabilities get some kind of help, just 17 percent of learning-disabled college students do.
Just 34 percent of learning-disabled students complete a four-year degree within eight years of finishing high school, according to the National Center for Special Education Research. By contrast, 56 percent of all students nationally graduate within six years, reports the National Student Clearinghouse.
In other words, people who have trouble learning have trouble learning in college. But we need to get more of them to go to college.