Report reveals over 10,000 young kids did not receive mandated special education services
A report released by the New York City Comptroller’s office shows that thousands of students across the five boroughs are missing out on mandated special education services.
Those services include speech, occupational therapy and physical therapy. Under federal and state law, the city is required to provide special education to all students with a disability, but this past school year, over 13,000 students did not get that opportunity.
Amy Tsai and other parents say that their students with special needs have not been receiving the individual education program services that are recommended to them.
“The responsibilities of the Department of Education has been neglected,” said Tsai, the community education and Council 10 borough appointee.
The comptroller’s office report revealed that spending has skyrocketed by 10 times the amount for special education claims over the past decade. Data shows that nearly 10,000 pre-school students have completely missed out on required services, with students in predominantly Black and Latino low-income communities the most.
Some parents say that they’ve been forced to search for special education services for their children on their own. While the DOE has been providing reimbursement, parents say the burden shouldn’t fall on their shoulders.
In response, the Department of Education says it will invest over $50 million to create more seats in programs to better meet the needs and serve the students who need these services.