Search

Ridgefield, CT: SPED $ goes "to address 'social/emotional' difficulties"-not learning difficulties

Mar 7, 2018, Ridgefield (CT) Press: Special education: The cost increase that’s tough to cut https://www.theridgefieldpress.com/103757/special-education-the-cost-increase-thats-tough-to-cut/ Rising relentlessly, special education costs aren’t easily held down — never mind cut — as more students qualify for placement meetings, spend their school days assisted by full-time paraprofessionals, are sent to costly out-of-district programs. Often, special education dollars go to address “social and emotional” difficulties — as opposed to learning disabilities or intellectual limitations. “This is a huge problem. I don’t think you can throw enough money at it,” Selectman Bob Hebert said Monday, March 5. “What happened to the days when teachers were hired to teach and parents were expected to do the parenting?” … “The mill rate would go up 4.29%,” Hebert said. “We’re between a rock and a hard place,” said Selectwoman Barbara Manners…. Enrollment is anticipated to fall 74 students, from 4,912 this year to 4,838 in 2018-19. Of the proposed $3,922,000 spending increase, $752,000 is for special education. … Of eight new “paraeducators” proposed in the budget, six are special education staff. “It’s driven by our need to meet the social and emotional needs of kids,” Baldwin told the selectmen. …