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Westerly, RI: 16 percent of students have special needs; "high marks" for SPED

The school district was found to be in compliance with all state and federal measures for the delivery on special education services following a recently completed audit…. The recently completed 2021-22 school year saw the district transition its special education services to the multi-tiered systems of support approach. Sixteen percent of the district's students are identified as requiring special education or related services, slightly higher than the state average of 15%. Of the district's special education students, 13 percent are autistic, 25% have a learning disability, 11% receive speech or language services, and 6% have been identified with emotional disabilities. "This should lead to more accurate identification of students who truly have learning disabilities," Rossi said….


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