Note: We're seeing the result of normalizing autism over the last 25 years. From a diagnosis to a difference. From awareness and action to acceptance and acquiescence. Autism has been scooted over to something in the sexual category. The "approved" symbol is a rainbow infinity loop. The rainbow has one meaning today and it's not Oz. The red, blue, yellow puzzle piece is considered discriminatory. Schools are overwhelmed with special education students, and severely behavioral students. It's not that teachers can't teach all of a sudden. The raw material, the kids, are not of the same neurological status, meaning quality. Tomorrow, it will start to get much worse. It's Covid vaccine day starting at 6 months. I hope we're still here in 6 years when that cohort starts school, the ones who live.
By Anne Dachel
IT’S REALLY ALL ABOUT AUTISM.
Autism, that perpetual mystery identified by the iconic multicolored puzzle piece is a condition rampant in kids today. We’ve learned to accept and even celebrate the disorder.
With literally THOUSANDS of stories on the decline of children everywhere on my site, LossOfBrainTrust.com, https://www.lossofbraintrust.com/ it’s an undisputable fact that autism or some other form of neurological damage has changed traditional childhood.
(We call this damage by a lot of different names: autism, Aspergers, ADD, ADHD, OCD, speech, language and communication needs (SLCN), social/emotional disorder (SED), severe learning difficulties (SLD), and many more acronyms.)
And it’s getting worse right before our eyes. Something is happening to children’s brains that make them unable to speak in many cases, unable to learn normally and unable to behave as children have always been expected to behave.
We congratulate ourselves for recognizing the sorrowful condition of children and continually call for better detection and earlier intervention, as if those improvements would solve all the problems of dysfunctional children worldwide.
I’m in my sixth year posting stories on LossOfBrainTrust, yet clearly this is a disaster that goes unrecognized, even by the people involved. Officials keep funding more special ed classrooms and even whole schools, but it’s never enough. We’re constantly told that THERE ARE MORE DISABLED CHILDREN without even an attempt at an explanation for why it’s happening.
And kids are increasingly MORE SEVERELY DISABLED. That fact is sometimes noted in news reports, again in passing, but it should scare everyone.
A story I found recently is a good example of what’s happening to children.
Wiscasset, ME: Wiscasset’s special education needs rise
Some Wiscasset students’ high needs for special education may call for the school department to add staff, Special Education Director Ken Spinney said. He told school committee members June 14 in Wiscasset Middle High School’s library and carried on Zoom, they might wonder why he did not speak up in budget season.
“(This has) been creeping over the last few months ... I said one week, ‘Wow, I’m just blown away, in one week, how things can change.’” He expects Wiscasset Elementary School to need a fourth special education teacher. “We need to build (the program) up in order to maintain safe and appropriate programming.”
WES Principal Kathleen Pastore concurred. Students are joining WES with an “increase of unique and challenging needs ... for whatever the reason, but students seem to be coming (with those),” she said.
…“We continue to see an increase in students with severe behaviors and without this type of program, we will likely see an increase in additional adult supports or out of district placements,” he wrote.
So, MORE kids are MORE SEVERLY DISABLED.
Why doesn’t anyone ever speculate on why it’s happening and not just in a town in Maine?
Recently I transcribed an interview by Wayne Rohde with top autism expert, Dr. Walter Zahorodny.
Dr. Zahorodny is from Rutgers and he calculates the New Jersey autism rate for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and it is considered the most accurate in the country.
I can’t believe Zahorodny said the following about the increases:
…We could really identify no specific reason why autism prevalence increased, not only in New Jersey, but in every other state in the Network.
And it increased for boys and for girls. It increased for white, black, Hispanic, Asian children. It increased across every state.
In the world of the prevalence estimates of the ADDM Network, we’ve only seen increases.
Throughout that DSM-IV period, only increases. When we shifted to the DSM-5 definition, we also only see increases.
And while the CDC puts the U.S. autism rate at 2.3 percent of children, Zahorodny adds these chilling figures:
San Diego, California, four percent.
Newark, New Jersey, five percent.
Toms River, New Jersey, seven percent.
One in five towns in New Jersey, in our region, have a rate of five percent or higher….
We have already in Newark and in Toms River eight to 12 percent of boys in the public education system [that] have a lifelong disability or most likely a lifelong disability.
In Ocean County in 2016, while the overall New Jersey estimate was 3.2 percent, we found that the prevalence of autism was already over five percent in Ocean County.
What does this mean for the future?
Zahorodny speculating on the eventual outcome:
I’m not an economist, but do you choose to project five percent or 10 percent as a realistic metric for how many people will need significant, maybe lifetime support?
Eventually five to 10 percent of adults will be disabled with autism and need lifetime care. So the disaster we see unfolding in our schools will increasingly be happening with adult services, only we’ll never be able to afford that ever-increasing cost of care for disabled individuals who aren’t here currently.
I’ve added several dozen new stories to my site this past week, and I’ll have many more by next week. The stories from Great Britain and Ireland show an education system under siege.
Here are excerpts:
… there are not enough special schools for children with severe behavioural and mental health problems …
The school only has space for 80 pupils in primary and secondary due to the complex needs of the children. Pupils travel in from around London and Essex, with some requiring journeys of up to two hours.
In response to the crisis, the Department for Education has announced it is investing billions in creating more special schools and alternative provisions.
Proposals for a 250-place special needs school took a step forward this week after West Northants Council (WNC) published more details for academies who might bid to run it.
“The pressure for SEND places is intense.
“As they are, mainstream schools simply do not have the capacity to take on more SEND pupils and the private sector in the county has also reached its limit.”
One primary school in Nottinghamshire reported that some children arrived at school unable to say their own names and that 50% of their pupils in reception and nursery were not toilet trained.
Education systems across Britain are "failing on every measure" and 60% of parents don't believe schools prepare pupils for work, according to The Times Education Commission.
Parents have welcomed a decision to build a new school for pupils with special educational needs but said it was long overdue. West Northamptonshire Council has agreed to build a state school costing £20m [$24M] at Tiffield for 250 pupils.
The authority currently spends £11m [$13M] per year to send 174 children to independent schools.
The data, sourced by the Bureau of Investigative Journalism (TBIJ), shows how councils across England are continuing to grapple with a black hole in funding for the rising numbers of children who need extra help.
TBIJ’s investigation has found the special needs deficit across England has reached at least £1.3bn [$1.6B]— an increase of around £450m [$546M] in the last year alone.
With a projected overall deficit of £51.8m [$62.9M] – including a forecast increase of around £20m [$24M] in the last year – Norfolk is among the worst affected authorities in England. Only Kent, Surrey, Devon and Hampshire have bigger deficits.
Nansa chief executive Mr Smith said the investigation’s findings: "Unfortunately highlight what we see on a daily basis; the demand for SEND provision in Norfolk far exceeds the support available”....
“There are some exceptional examples of SEND provision across our county, but most must tackle increasingly difficult waiting lists....
...Across the schools surveyed, 95,991 pupils identified as having special educational needs and disability (SEND), making up 18% of all pupils - higher than last year.
The first of a new wave of up to 60 special and alternative provision free schools across England will also begin opening from September 2025, creating approximately 4,500 new places across the country, and boosting choice for parents.
…the SEND system is broken.”
“We need a mental health professional in every GP practice as well as face-to-face services in every primary and secondary school. These are real solutions that can be put in place rather than the First Minister offering warm words but little action, year after year.
Mr Sarwar recounted that an eight-year-old boy diagnosed with autism 10 months ago has been waiting to see a psychiatrist while his condition has become worse.
“We have invested £40 million [$49M] to improve CAMHS and to clear all backlogs by March 2023.”
The minister said the Scottish Government has already provided an additional £15m [$18M] . . .
Many children in Cork still have no school place for special education around the city, but the Department said that at least 30 pupils will be offered a place at the Rochestown school initially.
The Department, along with the National Council of Special Education is also working to provide further support and expansions at three other Cork schools.
Carrigaline Community Special School which opened in 2021 is to see 16 extra places for the coming school year, and St. Killian’s Special School in Mayfield is to see an additional 18 places for September.
Parents of special needs children "have their backs to the wall and are accepting inappropriate school places" the Dáil has been told.
The Dáil debated a Sinn Féin private members bill on Tuesday which called on the Government to "publish the data on the true number of children without an appropriate school place for September", as well as guaranteeing that a previously-proposed "segregationist" special education centre plan would not go ahead.
Cork South-Central TD Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire told the Dáil that it was "disgraceful" that the Government was looking to use emergency measures to find spaces for at least 267 children who do not have appropriate places in schools.
"This year, the Department of Education will spend in excess of €2bn [$2.7B], or over 25% of the department’s budget, on providing additional teaching and care supports for children with special educational needs," the counter-motion stated.
Ms Tully was speaking as her party put forward a motion calling on the Government to introduce emergency measures to ensure all children have an appropriate school place this September.
She said there were hundreds of children with additional learning needs either without a school placement or in inappropriate school placement.
“In reality, that number is significantly higher. That does not include the thousands of children whose parents, desperate and feeling that they have had no other choice, have accepted an inappropriate place for their child,” the Cork South-Central TD said.
Tommy is 13 years old and is waiting 1.5 years for therapies since his Autism diagnosis.
Invisible queues exist where some children are waiting for the most essential therapies for up to and beyond three years.