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ERIC Number: ED439553
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1999
Pages: 19
Abstractor: N/A
Boxed In: An Explanation for the Growth of Special Education.
Ruediger, Greg; Lorance, Anne Gates
Noting that the number of students served in special education programs has increased at alarming rates since 1975, this paper posits that this increase is due to recent social and political variables and their impact on the educational system. Special emphasis is placed on how state and local educational leaders respond to national education movements. The paper argues that the academic excellence movement has led to an emphasis on standardized achievement tests and a deficit perspective towards children, in which children who vary from the standard are perceived as needing "fixing," usually by special education programs and interventions. Educators are seen as "boxed in" by the emphasis on achievement test performance and unable to teach to individual student needs and interests. The paper urges educators to develop a new vision of educational intervention based on a wellness rather than deficit paradigm and a focus on strengths rather than deficits of children and families. Researchers are encouraged to bridge the gap between research and practice, and specific research needs are identified. (Contains 29 references.) (DB)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Practitioners; Researchers; Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A