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 3, 2019
2 min read
MN: 'When we see the rise of special education needs/more diagnoses of kids with special needs...'
Updated: Jan 4, 2019
Jan 3, 2019, MinnPost: From early ed to school safety: A look at the education issues Minnesota lawmakers are set to tackle in 2019 https://www.minnpost.com/education/2019/01/from-early-ed-to-school-safety-a-look-at-the-education-issues-minnesota-lawmakers-are-set-to-tackle/Heading into the upcoming legislative session, state lawmakers will be grappling with a number of pressing education issues — everything from school safety and student mental health to school funding and early childhood education.
The state already carves out the largest portion of its general fund budget to support K-12 education, which accounts for over 40 percent of state spending. But with a projected $1.5 billion surplus heading into a budget-setting session, many lawmakers are entertaining requests to invest more in schools and education-related services. …
Safety and mental health
In the wake of the school shooting in Parkland, Florida, school safety and student mental health quickly became a hallmark of the last legislative session. Lawmakers of both parties crafted proposals seeking to boost funding for everything from physical security enhancements for school buildings to police officers at schools and mental health services provided in schools. …
Nelson says she’ll be looking to revive her Safe and Secure Schools Act, which the Minnesota Senate passed in a supplemental budget bill last year. It sought to provide funding for “hardening of the target” through building security features, as well as provide funding for additional mental health supports in schools, school resource officers, or any other personnel schools deemed necessary at the local level.
“I know, in the Senate, that’s going to be one of our top priorities, early out of the gate,” she said.
The incoming Majority Leader in the House, Ryan Winkler, DFL-Golden Valley, says advancing funding for full-service community schools is a priority this session. This school model includes placing a greater emphasis on mental health services for students, who can’t always afford to access these services on their own outside of the school. This may mean creating “special funding categories” to ensure that state dollars that go to schools actually end up paying for additional student support services, he said.
“The need for counselors and mental health support in schools is not necessarily required or seen in the general funding formula. So we will be looking at addressing those needs as well,” he said. …
While Winkler says lawmakers will continue to support schools’ autonomy in choosing how, exactly, to spend the state dollars they receive, based upon the local needs that they identify, he says there’s a real need for lawmakers to take a closer look at special education costs.
“When we see the rise of special education needs and more diagnoses of kids with special needs, I think looking at the high impact of special education costs on districts — which isn’t necessarily reflected in the funding formula — that’s important,” he said.
He’s referring to the fact that many districts are forced to divert funding from their own general fund to cover the costs of providing special education services to their students. These services are federally mandated — as many agree they should be. Yet the federal government has long ignored its promise to cover 40 percent of these costs, leaving school districts on the hook to fill the gap. …