Monday, September 14, 2009

I remember when everyone wanted to declare their child "gifted"

Man, times have changed.

What is especially odd is that almost all the growth in special education over the last ‎three decades has occurred in just two of the 13 federal categories for disabilities: ‎specific learning disability (SLD, which includes dyslexia) and “other health” (which ‎includes attention-deficit disorders — ADD). The size of the remaining eleven federal categories combined has remained relatively flat, while SLD has tripled and “other health” has ‎quadrupled. Those two categories account for 86 percent of the increase in special-‎education enrollments. If there really were a medical plague afflicting the nation’s children, we ‎would expect to see an increase in more objectively diagnosed categories, like ‎mental retardation, blindness, and deafness, and not just in the relatively mild and ‎ambiguous categories of SLD and “other health.”‎