U.S. Department of Education found that an autistic student costs an average of $19,000 a year, or triple the cost for a typical child. Where districts offer one-on-one programs and more, spending can exceed $75,000.
Do not make the mistake of thinking this does not affect everyone. School systems are tied to property tax in the US.
“The federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act guarantees "free appropriate" public education from age 3 through high school or age 21, whichever comes first, to all disabled students. But the government has never fully funded the act.”
Nationwide Autism affects 1 in 150 children. In some states such as New Jersey that rate is 1 in 95.
20,000 students diagnosed in 1993 are in their later years of extended high school. 6X that many are now in elementary school and increasing percentages enter every year.
From “edutopia” the George Lucas Educational Foundation:
As the number of special-needs students soars, public schools grapple with ways to offer high-quality education without going broke.
(from comment section)
“I realize that my comments and my feelings are politically incorrect. I feel really angry about this. Why doesn't my bright creative typical child get $19K worth of resources every year? She's probably more than likely going to make a bigger impact on the future than a child with severe autism. Why can't resources be spread evenly amongst all kids? You get the best you can for your particular situation with the per capita amount for all kids in your district? Why is a child with disabilities entitled to more of my hard earned tax dollars than my own typical child???”
Sandra from Phoenix
Who amongst us can answer Sandra any better than we can answer a parent of “a child who by choice spent his time blocking out the world and spinning under his crib … without the education he received he would require more total care than he will in the future … and THAT will affect everyone as well.”
Life may be like a box of chocolates but education is not as simple as a box of crayons.
Caregivingly Yours, J Patrick Leer
website: www.CaregivinglyYours.comvideos: http://www.youtube.com/daddyleer
(also available in Blogger edition, Caregiver Blog: "Caregivingly Yours")