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Supreme Court Ruling Will Impact Special Needs Students

March 31, 2017

The nation's highest court has redefined how public schools should educate students with exceptionalities

The United States Supreme Court recently issued a ruling that could very well impact learning for disabled students across America. Currently, the law requires equal access, but not equal outcomes. Standard practice, therefore, leads schools to do little more than go through the motions when it comes to educating students with challenging disabilities. Parents of these students are left with few options -- either keep them in school where they are unlikely to get a proper education, or opt for costly private options.


The justices of the court, however, unanimously found that public schools must to better. This could potentially impact the lives of thousands of parents from coast to coast:


“The fact that it’s unanimous shows we know a lot more about educating kids with disabilities … and that we recognize that kids with disabilities can make progress and can succeed,” says Laura Schifter, a lecturer of special education at Harvard University who consults with states and advocacy groups. “When you think about it, education generally in the last 100 years has not changed much, but that's not the case in special education.”


The court did not map out specifics, but it seems likely this ruling will have a powerful effect on how schools educate students with exceptionalities. Change will take time, but it seems there will indeed be change.

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