Nov 7, 2019, Arlington (VA) Catholic Herald: All four Arlington diocesan high schools now offer programs for special needs students https://www.catholicherald.com/news/catholic_living/discover_catholic_schools/mission_accomplished_for_special_needs/ A mission has been accomplished — all four diocesan high schools have a program allowing students with intellectual and developmental disabilities the opportunity to receive a Catholic education. … Rinaldi said the commitment to providing inclusive education to students with disabilities is unifying. “At the high school level, our peer mentors make our inclusive services possible,” Rinaldi said. “Peer mentor programs are implemented differently at each school, but they have a common role in each school, working one-on-one with a student for the school year, assisting and supporting the student in a given class, and forming friendships.” … “This is a natural development of a program we are already doing. We are already serving students with special needs and learning differences. That’s an important piece to this puzzle,” said J-Lynn Van Pelt, director of special services at Ireton. “They make up almost 19 percent of our overall population but now we are working toward making sure we improve that programming for current students. We can now open our doors to a wider variety of students with needs.” Ireton is adding a De Sales Program for students with specific diagnosed learning disabilities, as well as furthering development of their academic support program and developing an Options Program. … Bishop Michael F. Burbidge spoke in an interview with Relevant Radio Oct. 21 about the diocese’s priority on welcoming students with disabilities. … … “They are part of who we are and of everything that we do. A goal that I have set before our Catholic educators is in a timely way, I want all our schools to be able to do that. We know that when we do, we are the ones blessed when we welcome these students with special gifts and challenges into our community. They bring out the best in the other students and the best in us.”
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.