History of Special Education in Public Schools

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History of the Treatment of Special Education in Public Schools The Educate America Act was passed in 1994 and was a step toward equality of education between children with and without disabilities. According to Olson and Platt (2000), the Educate America Act “represents a national framework for education reform to improve our system, policies, standards, and most importantly, outcomes for all students.” This legislation outlined goals that were very broad and simplistic, but also inspiring to many people. This act did not specifically address the issue of the education of children with special needs, but addressed goals of the education system and all students. Because students with special needs need just what their label states, a special education class aims to provide more assistance and attention. To aid in doing this, many assistive technologies have been developed. An assistive technology, according to The Assistive Technology Act of 1998 is “any item, piece of equipment, or product system, whether acquired commercially, modified, or customized, that is used to increase, maintain, or improve functional capabilities of individuals with disabilities.” The stepping stone to the Assistive Technology Act was the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). This act was passed in the 1970s, but amendments were added in 1997. The act supports equal opportunity for special needs people and the amendments to it support the integration of special education students with students who have little or no disabilities. With this inclusion and integration policy, more and more special needs students are using assistive technology so that they can accelerate just as much as the rest of the class. As a result of the amendme... ... middle of paper ... ...s about the IDEA and how it relates to assistive technology. Schlosser, R. W., McGhie-Richmond D., Blackstein-Adler S., and Mirenda, P. (2000). Training a school team to integrate technology meaningfully into the curriculum: . Journal of Special Education Technology, 15(1). Chute, E. (2005, April 12). The rising cost of special education: Poor school districts called in jeopardy. Pittsburgh Post- Gazette. Retrieved April 15, 2005 from www.post-gazette.com. This article discussed the lack of funding in some school districts and how that causes a negative effect on the quality of education for special education student. Steele-Carlin, S. (2001). Assistive devices help challenged kids get the most from learning. Education World. This article was an overview of the benefits of assistive technology. Images taken from http://www.schoolicons.com/eng/.
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