Special Education Essay

Special Education Essay

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According to the democratic theory postulated by Amy Gutmann, citizens should be entitled to make rules that govern educational policies at national levels. These policies should reflect the ongoing scrutiny of the liberal principles of nonrepression (education may not proscribe deliberation pertaining to any particular set of rational ideas) and
nondiscrimination (parents nor educators may espouse practices that may deter children from partaking in a democratic education). Importantly, the discretional power of these citizens should be constrained by those fundamental principles of nondiscrimination and nonrepression. The realm of special education and its historical background in conjunction with the many facets of nondiscrimination should be the focal point. Thus, it is my hope that this paper will give students, parents, and educators the knowledge and insight into the issues i.e. court cases, which surround nondiscrimination and its key ideologies in the domain of special education reform.
To understand how special education reform emerged, we need to bethink some of the first federal laws of the United States that were designed to assist people with disabilities. Specifically, there was a federal law passed by the Fifth Congress dating back to 1798. This law authorized a Maine Hospital Service later known as the Public Health Service to bestow medical services to disabled sailors (Braddock, 1987). Unfortunately, up until World War II there were only a paltry number of federal laws able to assist persons with disabilities. Only war veterans with service-related disabilities were allowed assistance (NICHY, 1997). This purported that, for nearly all of United States history, institutions i.e. schools were permitted to...

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...cided in its ruling that all students including those with disabilities be provided a publicly supported education. The court also adjured that the board of education allocate its funds equitably so that all children receive a free and appropriate education. Lastly, the court ordered the board to provide due process safeguards in the event the school attempt to alter a child’s educational status i.e. reassignment, transfers, suspension, and expulsion.
In response to the seminal cases elucidated above, specifically PARC and Mills and impending litigation, Congress began passing new laws to further augment the rights of those students with disabilities. These new laws, most notably, utilized many of the legal principles that were integrated in those preceding suits insofar that students would be entitled a free and appropriate public education.

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