Children today are noticeably different from previous generations, and the proof is in the news coverage we see every day. This site shows you what’s happening in schools around the world. Children are increasingly disabled and chronically ill, and the education system has to accommodate them. Things we've long associated with autism, like sensory issues, repetitive behaviors, anxiety and lack of social skills, are now problems affecting mainstream students. Blame is predictably placed on bad parenting (otherwise known as trauma from home).
Addressing mental health needs is as important as academics for modern educators. This is an unrecognized disaster. The stories here are about children who can’t learn or behave like children have always been expected to. What childhood has become is a chilling portent for the future of mankind.
Anne Dachel, Media editor, Age of Autism
(John Dachel, Tech. assist.)
"What will happen in another 4 years? How can we go on like this? This is a national (and international) problem of monumental proportions. We have an entire new class of children who cannot be accommodated by the system: many are manifestly neurologically impaired. Meanwhile, the government and the medical profession sleep on regardless."
UK media editor, Age of Autism
"The generation of American children born after 1990 are arguably the sickest generation in the history of our country."
Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.
“It seemed to me that with rising autism prevalence, you’d also see rising autism costs to society, and it turns out, the costs are catastrophic.”
“They calculated that in 2015 autism cost the United States $268 billion and they projected that if autism continues at its current rate, we’re looking at one trillion dollars a year in autism costs by 2025, so within five years.”
Toby Rogers, PhD, Political economist
Jan 25, 2020
3 min read
ARIZONA: Exploding SPED cost "growing strain" on ed spending:
Jan 21, 2020, AZFamily.com: Bill to address Arizona special education funding for first time in nearly 20 yearshttps://www.azfamily.com/news/investigations/cbs_5_investigates/bill-to-address-arizona-special-education-funding-for-first-time/article_15a2e9b2-3c92-11ea-b79a-db6cc8ddf7bc.htmlFederally mandated special education services are underfunded. With more students having more severe disabilities, there is a growing strain on general classroom spending in Arizona's public schools.
Now, Arizona lawmakers are considering a bill that would help public schools manage the rising cost of special education services.
“The time is now,” said Arizona state senator Sylvia Allen, who is introducing a bill that would increase funding for about 100,000 special education students statewide. …
It’s been about 20 years since special education funding has been addressed. In that time, Dr. Kym Marshall, Director of Student Services for Chandler Unified School District says the special education population has exploded and so have the needs.“It’s not just about reading writing and math, it’s more about mental health, social emotional,” said Marshall. “When you include the special designed instruction from the special ed teacher, the speech pathologist, occupational therapist, possible paraprofessional support, right, it all adds up and the district has to fund it. It is a federal mandate so if the student needs it then we have to provide it.”
That means dipping into the school’s general fund because, right now, students who fall into one of the six categories only get $12 more than any typically performing student.
These are the following six categories of special education:
--OHI – Other Health Impaired
--DD – Developmentally Delayed
--ED – Emotional Disabilities
--MIID – Mild Intellectual Disabilities
--SLI – Speech and Language Impairments
--SLD – Specific Learning Disabilities
“We took 18 students, varying levels of disabilities and supports and services and looked at what that cost the district and just with those 18 students we were in the red just over 327,000 dollars,” said Marshall.
The Chandler Unified School District has more than 5,300 special education students.“We normally grow about 100 students a year and this past year October 1, 2018 to October 1, 2019 we saw an increase of 225 students already," Marshall added. …
What we do know is that the population keeps growing without any additional funding.
Between the 2007 to 20017 school years, the number of Arizona students diagnosed with autism more than doubled and from 2008 to 2014, the rate of newborns exposed to narcotics shot-up an alarming 218%. …
“There are just too many children who fall into these classifications that haven’t been true in the past,” said Sen. Allen. “I don’t know all the reasons and I guess it doesn’t matter for this argument. We have the issue now let’s try to help these kids.” …
“Sometimes they are not able to stay in the public school setting they need extreme and intensive supports in order to give them the skills to come back,” said Marshall.
This would help public schools seek reimbursement for those placements which can run more than $50,000 or more per student….
Senate Bill 1060 will be discussed in the Senate Education Committee January 21st.
Even if this bill passes, Arizona is struggling with a teacher shortage that's even more dire for special education, because those positions remain some of the toughest to recruit and retain.
“Some reasons why they leave is the aggressive behaviors they are seeing, the increased paperwork and the litigiousness of being a special education teacher,” said Marshall….