ERIC Number: ED304829
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1988
Reference Count: N/A
"New" EMRs. Chapter One.
MacMillan, Donald L.
Changes in the population of children served as educable mentally retarded (EMR) in the public schools are examined. The term "new" refers to children currently classified as EMR, in contrast to children classified as EMR in the late 1960s, predating court actions challenging the criteria for EMR eligibility. "New" EMRs have an IQ of 50-75, while the former IQ cutoff was 85. Prevalence rates have been higher for certain ethnic minority groups, such as blacks and Hispanics. It was felt by some that disproportionate enrollments were due to the discriminatory nature of the intelligence tests administered. Despite the reduction in the total number of children classified as EMR, the definition change had relatively little impact on ethnic disproportion. The average ability level of EMR children today is lower than it was prior to the revision, and many empirical and philosophical questions need to be answered concerning the best content and setting for their educational programs. The marginal learners, who were decertified as EMR, became enrolled in regular classes and received no special education services; they now find themselves ill-prepared to meet minimum competency standards required for graduation. Little improvement has occurred in the quality of education received by these students. (JDD)
Descriptors: Black Youth, Classification, Court Litigation, Definitions, Educational Practices, Elementary Secondary Education, Eligibility, Equal Education, Ethnic Groups, Handicap Identification, Hispanic Americans, Incidence, Intelligence Quotient, Labeling (of Persons), Mild Mental Retardation, Special Education, Student Placement, Test Bias
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Practitioners; Policymakers
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: In: Robinsin, Greg A., Ed., and others. "Best Practices in Mental Disabilities. Volume Two"; see EC 212 523.