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S. Dakota: 10-11% increase in SPED in 4 years; only 2% increase in enrollment

Sept 25, 2018, South Dakota Public Broadcasting: The Need Of Special Education Funding Is On The Rise http://listen.sdpb.org/post/need-special-education-funding-rise Senator Jim Bolin was the vice-chair for the Extraordinary Cost Fund for Special Education summer study. The group met 3 times over the course of the summer. Tape recording: Bolin: “…the increasing need and the increasing number of students who are involved with special education in South Dakota. Since 2012 to 2016 the number of students on special ed has increased by about 10, maybe 11 percent. Almost exactly 2,000 more students are involved with the special education programs in the state, whereas our total enrollment has only gone up by about 2 percent…. “There’s been a lot of questions about special ed enrollment and how the state is going to finance this.” Bolin went on to explain how the state had capped their support of sped at $4M, yet the federal government requires states to meet the needs of severely disabled students, who often require out-of-district placement. Furthermore, the federal government has never paid their fair share. “Some of the students districts deal with have very severe issues. … Bolin said that costs are raising so they’re looking into adding another $1M to the extra support fund. “That should buy us some time.”