Download Distinguishing Disability: Parents, Privilege, and Special by Colin Ong-Dean PDF

By Colin Ong-Dean

Scholars in specific education schemes could have commonly divergent studies. For a few, unique schooling quantities to a dumping flooring the place colleges sell off their challenge scholars, whereas for others, it offers entry to prone and lodgings that tremendously enhance possibilities of succeeding in class and past. Distinguishing incapacity argues that this inequity in remedy is without delay associated with the disparity in assets possessed through the scholars’ parents.            because the mid-1970s, federal legislation has empowered mom and dad of public university childrens to interfere in almost each point of the choice making inquisitive about precise schooling. despite the fact that, Colin Ong-Dean unearths that this strength is usually to be had basically to these mom and dad with the money, academic historical past, and self assurance had to make potent claims approximately their children’s disabilities and comparable wishes. Ong-Dean records this classification divide by way of studying a wealth of facts, together with old premiums of studying incapacity prognosis, courtroom judgements, and suggestion literature for folks of disabled teenagers. In an period of increasing unique schooling enrollment, Distinguishing incapacity is a well timed research of ways this enlargement has created new types of inequality.

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For instance, a mother testified in the EAHCA hearings that her son, diagnosed as mentally retarded, had made tremendous gains when a local public school began a program for mentally retarded students. It was his experience in this program, she felt, that had made it possible for him later to get a job. ”18 Senator Harrison Williams, the bill’s main sponsor, made a similar point at the opening of the hearings by noting that it cost roughly $200,000 to institutionalize a handicapped person for life, whereas an investment of $20,000 in the education of each handicapped child could “insure productive lives” for 90 percent of them.

Indeed, a central focus of her work has been the various ways upper-middle-class parents contribute to their children’s future success by intervening on their behalf in various institutional contexts—particularly in schools, where upper-middle-class children are able to receive “customized educational experiences” because of their parents’ advocacy.

1 clearly shows, while the total number of claims brought under the EAHCA has increased steadily since its passage, class actions have continuously declined as a proportion of all cases. , beginning in 1981-85), class actions also decline in absolute numbers. Thus, while 54 percent of cases (7 of 13) in 1977-80 were class actions, in 1991-95 only 5 percent (6 of 110) were. The weakening of the EAHCA’s substantive goals is also apparent in the courts’ interpretation of its mainstreaming or “least restrictive environment” (LRE) requirement.

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