National Academic Standards Call For Higher Bar In Special Education
A sweeping new proposal outlining national education standards offers “a historic opportunity” for students with disabilities “to excel within the general curriculum,” proponents say.
The draft plan crafted by education experts convened by the nation’s governors and state school chiefs outlines yearly curriculum recommendations in English and math for students in kindergarten through twelfth grade.
The idea behind the new standards is to apply uniform, high expectations to all students, including those with disabilities, no matter which state they attend school in.
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Under the recommended guidelines, fourth graders should know the difference between words like “their” and “there” while eighth graders should know how to use the Pythagorean theorem, among other criteria.
Special education students should be held to grade level standards in order to succeed beyond high school graduation, an introduction to the draft indicates. While students with disabilities will likely require appropriate supports and accommodation, standards should only be compromised in cases where students have “significant cognitive disabilities” and after such students are offered numerous ways to learn and express their knowledge.
Organizers of the plan at the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers are accepting public comment on the proposal until April 2 before publishing final recommendations. Each state will determine whether or not to adopt the standards.