Advocates say discipline policies are failing special needs students

Sep 29, 2015

Public schools are required by federal law to educate students with disabilities, but some advocates and parents say many schools are failing when it comes to behavior management for those children.


We learn more from Elmer Cerano, Executive Director of Michigan Protection and Advocacy Services, and Assistant Professor in MSU’s Special Education Program Summer Ferreri.

Opportunities for people with disabilities have undergone a radical transformation in the past four decades, especially when it comes to education. Before the 1970s, students with special needs were often segregated from their peers if they were even in school. Federal legislation changed that and mandated that public schools move special needs students into regular classes, but some advocates and parents worry that many schools are failing when it comes to supporting those students.

Michigan Protection and Advocacy Services is concerned with methods used by teachers to handle the sometimes disruptive behavior of special needs students.

Michigan Lt. Gov. Brian Calley recently gathered feedback from thousands of parents of kids with special needs. One of the major concerns raised was the tactics teachers and other school employees used when it came to dealing with disruptive behavior from those students.

Current State talks about how well schools are serving kids with special needs with Elmer Cerano, Executive Director of Michigan Protection and Advocacy Services, and Summer Ferreri, Assistant Professor in MSU’s Special Education Program.

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