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Juneau, AK: 18% of students are SPED

Mar 29, 2018, Juneau (AK) Empire: School district budget cut another $3.5M—School Board requests more money from city than ever before http://juneauempire.com/news/local/2018-03-29/school-district-budget-cut-another-35m Juneau’s school district budget will start the 2019 school year with $3.5 million less than last year after the Board of Education approved the Fiscal Year 2019 budget during a special meeting at Juneau-Douglas High School Tuesday. … Total cuts to the budget accumulate to more than $3.5 million, largely due to lack of funding from the state, which is facing a multibillion dollar deficit. … One of the major issues was the proposed cut of $500,000 from the special education department — which stands at nearly $16 million. … One point she presented is that there is a higher-than-normal number of special needs students at the district. Therefore, more money is allocated. According to the U.S. Department of Education, 13.4 percent of students are identified as children with disabilities in Alaska. The Juneau School District’s number is at 18 percent according to the district’s website. The school district is considered a magnet school — a public school offering special instruction and programs not available elsewhere, designed to attract a more diverse student body from throughout a school district. “We do not have time or a mechanism to determine if we are a magnet school,” Weiss said. “What we do know is that our number (of special education students) is increasing.” …