By Anne Dachel
On my website, LossOfBrainTrust.com, I continue to post stories on the decline of education and childhood in the 21st century. I can only conclude that this disaster will never be addressed for what it is by officials. SOMEHOW we’ll just struggle on until everything collapses. These stories are just a sample and they speak for themselves. I really have no words of my own for this
April 21, 2019, (UK) Telegraph: Seven-year-old boy threatened to stab pregnant teacher in stomach as union warns of rise in pupil violence
A seven-year-old boy threatened to stab a pregnant teacher in the stomach over a literacy lesson, it emerges as a union warns of a rise in children who do not respond to any form of punishment.
…families need to be held accountable for their children’s behaviour, explaining: “If your child is constantly disruptive, if they are violent, if they are abusive, I think it’s about time that schools and teachers question the parenting of those children.
April 20, 2019, (Canada) Study Finds: Study: 1 In 5 Children Suffers From A Mental Health Disorder
One in five children suffer from a mental disorder — with notable increases in depression and anxiety over the past 30 years — yet less than one- third have had contact with a mental healthcare provider, a new study finds.
April 20, 2019, (Canada) Durham (ON) Region: Durham school board expecting 350 to 400 more students with autism over the next year Board chair says budget process will be 'very difficult'
The Durham District School Board is anticipating an influx of students with autism over the next year, as a result of changes to Ontario’s autism program.
A new report says an additional 350 to 400 students with autism who have "significant needs" are expected by winter 2020 — about triple the normal amount.
April 20, 2019, (UK) Guardian: One in four teachers 'experience violence from pupils every week'—Many say poor behaviour is making them want to leave the profession, NASUWT finds
One in four teachers in the UK say they experience physical violence from their pupils at least once a week, and many say poor behaviour is making them want to leave the profession, according to figures compiled by a teaching union….
Nearly nine in 10 teachers said they had received some sort of verbal or physical abuse from pupils in the past year. Eighty-six per cent said they had been sworn at and 46% said they had been verbally threatened….
“Having taught for almost 40 years I have witnessed a demonstrable and seemingly unstoppable deterioration in pupil behaviour,” one said.
April 19, 2019, Fox26, Fresno, CA: Sinclair Cares: Popular places catering to autistic children
The number of children living with autism has jumped 15 percent over the past two years. And now many popular attractions are learning how to cater to that growing population.
April 18, 2019, NH Public Radio: With Rising Budget Woes, Manchester Struggles To Meet Special Ed Needs
For schools across New Hampshire, special education is a growing need and a growing cost. Nowhere is that more apparent than in Manchester, the state’s largest district, where special ed expenditures have nearly tripled in the last twenty years. …
Mosley has done this work for 40 years. And in the last decade she’s noticed more runners and more kids with extreme, complex needs that require expensive services.
“What we are seeing for the needs of children has changed dramatically," she says. "A lot more aggression; a lot more poverty; a lot more trauma. And we know that trauma can change how the brain functions.”
April 18, 2019, (UK) Bury Free Press: Special school proposals for Wetheringsett Manor
Education chiefs at Suffolk County Council admitted that demand for specialist places was increasing by around 18 per cent, which prompted a new £45 million [$58M US dollars]plan to create more than 800 extra spaces at new and existing schools….
The report said there was 'clearly a significant need for this type of facility within Suffolk' and the plans would create 'significant economic benefits'. The school will cater for 54 youngsters aged 11 to 19, and operate a teaching day of 8.45am to 3.15pm. …
Education chiefs at Suffolk County Council admitted that demand for specialist places was increasing by around 18 per cent, which prompted a new £45 million plan to create more than 800 extra spaces at new and existing schools….
April 17, 2019, (Ireland) RTE: Teacher union calls for national special needs training
It is estimated that up to 25% of [Irish] students have a special educational need. This can range from a condition such as autism or Down Syndrome to dyslexia or an attention deficit disorder.
April 16, 2019, (UK) Redditch &Alcester Advertiser: Special needs teachers under pressure as cuts take their toll
It is not unique to Warwickshire and the big pressure is the massive increase in demand for special education needs and our ability to meet that demand in the manner than our public expect us to.”…
And there were also concerns from Cllr Jerry Roodhouse (Lib Dem Eastlands) who added: “This is not going to go away and the pressure is building.
April 16, 2019, Great Falls (MT) Tribune: Autism Awareness: The growing tide of supports and services
When I was training to be a special education teacher 30 years ago, a common response to the mention of autism was, “never heard of it.” We didn’t learn much about it, we didn’t prepare to teach children with autism, nor did we have kids in our classrooms who were identified as autistic. It was another 10 years before educators started talking about a new wave of student behaviors and challenges in the classroom. Autism information began to flood our mailboxes and school staff meetings. It wasn’t long before our education and family-focused social service systems were overwhelmed. We didn’t see it coming and we weren’t prepared for it.
The number of autism diagnoses has been steadily rising in the United States.
April 16, 2019, Denver Post: Letters: Increases in autism; …
The Colorado Department of Education’s government data reports that since 1992, Colorado student population grew by 49 percent while autism increased by over 400 percent. That is 17 Colorado students with autism were reported in 1992 and the CDE reported that 7,805 students in 2018 have autism.
Colorado is not alone. The Philadelphia Inquirer reported this month that autism spectrum disorder rates in New Jersey 4-year-olds rose by 43 percent in four years.
April 15, 2019, University of Delaware: Transforming Special Education
As the number of students who qualify for special education increases to record levels, educators are struggling to keep up. According to the Rodel Foundation of Delaware, the number of students who qualify for special education has risen by 18 percent — or 3,141 students — in a little over a decade. Statewide, over 20,000 students — or 15 percent of all children enrolled in Delaware public schools — receive some form of special education.
April 15, 2019, New Jersey News12: CDC: 1 in 35 NJ 4-year-olds are on the autism spectrum
A new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that 1 in 59 4-year-olds nationwide were identified on the spectrum. In New Jersey, the likelihood rises to 1 in 35. …
Michelle Perez believes that number is in part due to early detection and awareness in New Jersey.
April 15, 2019, News Medical: Why have autism rates 'exploded' in New Jersey?
Researchers at Rutgers University have revealed that pre-schoolers in New Jersey have the highest rates of autism ever recorded in the US. They report rates of autism have increased faster in children living in New Jersey than in other states.
The study, which was conducted in conjunction with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), states that up to three percent of children in the US live with autism spectrum disorder (ASD)….
Autism rates increased by 43% between 2010 and 2014
April 15, 2019, (UK) Belfast Live: Call for more support to educate Northern Ireland’s most vulnerable children
Around a third of the pupils are considered to be in the lowest quarter of the population academically, many have significant self-esteem issues and a negative attitude towards education….
April 15, 2019, (UK) Big Issue (England): Funding shortfalls for special needs schools causing ‘untold misery’
Demand outstripping funding for special education needs and disabilities (SEND) provision in schools is forcing English councils to cut staff and increase assessment waiting times.
The National Education Union (NEU) said funding allocated to local authorities since 2015 has not kept up with rapidly increasing demand, with many councils having “reached crisis point”.
The number of children and young people granted an Education Health Care Plan (which states their legal entitlement to funding for extra educational support) has rocketed by more than a third since 2015, from 240,000 to 320,000.
April 13, 2019, (UK) Northern Ireland, Ulster Herald: Tyrone mum frustration over support for autism
…Currently in the North, one in 34 children are diagnosed with a form of autism….
April 13, 2019, (UK) Northumberland Gazette: Search for partner to run Northumberland's special free school
Coun Wayne Daley, the cabinet member for children’s services, highlighted that Northumberland has seen a 50 per cent increase in the number of pre-school children with complex needs since 2013 and the number of pupils in special schools has risen by 32 per cent in this period.
April 12, 2019, (Canada) Toronto London Free Press: Troubled students. Terrified classmates. No easy fix
Throwing books and upending chairs. Kicking, punching, yelling. Lockdowns regularly called during violent outbursts, meaning classrooms and even whole school floors grind to a standstill – and learning stops.
Parents of children at some schools in the Thames Valley District school board say they’re at their wit’s end when it comes to constant disturbances at their schools caused by students who not only interrupt their children’s education, but also scare them so much they no longer want to attend. …
Aggressive behaviours, violent tendencies “pervasive”
“We are losing control of our schools,” declares one local teachers union leader, who describes violence as “pervasive.”…
…I believe that we have more and more children entering our schools with more needs than they have in the past. What we require is additional support to assist those students.”…
April 12, 2019, (UK) Ilford Recorder: New special educational needs school could be built in Newbury Park
“[It] will cater for pupils with severe learning difficulties and a range of complex needs including autism spectrum disorders, social, emotional mental health (SEMH) communication difficulties and medical needs,” according to planning documents….
Apr 11, 2019, (UK) Weston Mercury: Schools in funding crisis with huge cuts and increasing costs
“The numbers of children who require additional or specialist support has significantly increased and this puts an additional and serious strain on school budgets where we are trying to support these children and families – as well as delivering high quality teaching and learning.
Apr 11, 2019, (UK) Belfast News Letter: Education Authority overspends £13 million on special needs provision
The Education Authority (EA) has overspend of almost £17m [$22M US dollars] in 2017/18 was mainly due to spending on special needs, it has been revealed.
Apr 11, 2019, New Jersey Herald: Vernon's new special ed director embraces mandate
For Vernon, where the 19 percent of students receiving special education services is about in line with the state average,
Apr 10, 2019, (UK) Bury Times: Council bid for new special free school approved by Department for Education
BURY could be set to welcome a new school for dozens of children with special educational needs after proposals were given the green light.
A Bury Council bid to open a special free school in Bury has been successful and received Department for Education approval.
The school will provide education to 80 girls and boys, aged 11 to 16, with autistic spectrum disorders and social language and communication needs….
Bury has seen significant growth in the number of young children diagnosed with social communication difficulties, with around 80 per cent of children seen by Fairfield Hospital’s child development centre showing such interaction issues….
Apr 4, 2019, (UK) Guardian: Funding for pupils with special educational needs drops 17%
North of England has been worst hit, report finds, with funding down 22% since 2015
Since 2015, government funding through the “high needs block” has increased by 11% across England, but demand has increased by 35%. In the north funding has increased by 8% but the number eligible for support has increased by 39%. …
Mar 31, 2019, UP students witness Oregon's crisis of disruptive learning
Behavior like this used to be less frequent. But over the last three years, OEA members are sharing more and more of these disruptive instances in Oregon classrooms.
“Educators have reported a noticeable increase in disrupted learning environments across the state over the last several years,” according to the OEA. “This increase, however, is difficult to quantify.” …
The report cites overcrowded classrooms, student trauma, poorly trained teachers, lack of resources and a decrease in time for P.E. or play for the children as the main reasons for this increase of poor behavior from students across Oregon. …
“Many educators also note that more students are coming to school with substantial social and emotional needs, physical health needs and mental health challenges,” the OEA report says. …
Mar 26, 2019, KAKE TV, Wichita, KS: Local high school creates calming room, sparks conversation of mental health with students
Teachers and counselors at Maize South High School want to help students take a mental break from stress. Between worrying about grades, jobs, extra curricular activities, and the future, stress can add up leaving students feeling anxious and overwhelmed. …
The room is now a safe haven for students struggling with anxiety, anger, and other emotions. It's complete with blankets and pillows, calming music, and dim lighting.
Mar 21, 2019, KGW8, Portland, OR: Classrooms in Crisis: Educators of special needs students sue districts
Paraeducators are suing districts after alleged physical abuse and emotional distress from students acting out. …
While Moore said she experienced some of these incidents throughout her career, she said things got worse during the last five or six years.
“To not be able to protect other students, coworkers and myself, you know. You feel defeated,” said Moore.
Mar 31, 2019, (UK) Schools Week: These children need more than a system of escalating consequences
Tens of thousands of children arrive in school with essential building blocks of their development missing. Before they learn their first letters, there is a gulf of disadvantage between them and their securely-attached, school-ready peers.
In the classroom we might see speech and language delay, physical delay, hyper-vigilance, poor impulse control, sensory processing difficulties, and a tendency to jump to flight-fight-freeze responses at the slightest provocation. …
Mar 31, 2019, Middletown (NY) Record: Little Britain Elementary School introduces flexible seating initiative
Little Britain Elementary School recently introduced a Flexible Seating Initiative after conducting research on how to support students who struggle with school anxiety, Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity (ADHD), and sensory issues.
Mar 26, 2019, (UK) Telegraph: More than one in ten primary school boys is labelled with mental disorder More than one in ten boys at primary school are being labelled as suffering from a mental disorder, amid growing concerns about their classroom behaviour, research suggests.
Mar 22, 2019, San Rafael, CA, Marin Independent Journal: Novato schools OK $1.8 million in budget cuts
“The costs for special education are up over $750,000 this year,” Hawkins told the board on Tuesday. “This is the largest increase in over 20 years.”…
Mar 21, 2019, Lewiston (ME) Sun Journal: Preliminary Auburn school budget up $2 million over last year
The number of young students with autism is rising. Last year Auburn had to place eight incoming kindergarten students out of district at a cost of $298,383. Of the eight, seven had autism. In the fall of 2018, Auburn placed four incoming kindergarten students with autism at an estimated cost of $260,763. In both years those costs were unanticipated, Grondin said.
Anne Dachel is Media Editor for Age of Autism.