The number of special education students in New York City public schools is rising at a staggering rate, increasing by some 18,000 students this year alone.

During the 2009-2010 school year, the district served 177,000 students, up from 159,000 the previous year. And the trend is expected to continue, with school district officials anticipating that 60 percent of new students next year will qualify for special education. Reasons for the growth are unclear.

Advocates, however, say something must be done to change how these students are being served, since graduation rates among special education students are lagging, reports NY1. To read more click here.

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