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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

More on the Isakson Legislation

WMAR in Baltimore reports on the Isakson legislation on education for the disabled:

At Wrightslaw, Sue Whitney argues:
[The legislation] would discriminate against student with disabilities by allowing schools to significantly lower the academic expectations for students with disabilities, based on their scores in state accountability tests.

This use of this test, for this purpose, would apply only to children with disabilities. S 1571 would provide additional remediation to a student who scored poorly on the state accountability test, unless that child had a disability.

The first rule of evaluation is to use a test for the purpose for which it was designed. The state accountability tests were designed to assess what a child had been taught, not what the child is able to learn. IDEA already has provisions in place to provide an alternative or modified curriculum for children who are unable to learn the regular education curriculum. These decisions are made based on valid assessments and by the child’s IEP team.