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ERIC Number: EJ1023797
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-Nov
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 25
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0198-7429
Toward Improved Accuracy: A Response to Kauffman and Badar
Kamphaus, Randy; DiStefano, Christine
Behavioral Disorders, v39 n1 p28-31 Nov 2013
The number of children estimated to suffer mental health disorders, and therefore, creating the need for special education services for children with emotional and behavioral disorders (EBD), is between 5% and 25% of children under the age of 18 (Brauner & Stephens, 2006). Admittedly, not all children with EBD have been identified and served, but many children have been identified as eligible for special education services as part of IDEIA regulation. Children identified with EBD are eligible for a variety of special education services. These services may be applied to interventions (or treatments, in mental health terminology) delivered in a regular classroom (e.g., supplementary aids and services, positive behavior intervention plans), while other services may require self-contained or pullout programming for all or part of the school day. Regardless of the method, the goal of special education is to improve the academic, behavioral, and emotional outcomes for children identified with EBD. Although the goal of special education is improved child outcomes, authors Randy Kamphaus and Christine DiStefano agree with the conclusion of Kauffman and Badar (2013) that parents and children may be influenced by social stigma associated with the classification, which may cause families to neglect or even decline special education services. In an attempt to increase special education participation by lessening the stigma associated with EBD identification, Kauffman and Badar offer four suggestions aimed at changing the public perception of special education services including: (1) discussing with stakeholders (e.g., parents, children) differences in behavior resulting from treatment in clear, understandable terms; (2) recognizing the reality of such differences due to treatment and its impact on students' learning; (3) emphasizing to stakeholders the benefits of special education; and (4) working to implement specialized instructional interventions (or treatments) as intended and planned. In this response Kamphaus and DiStefano state that ultimately, they agree with Kauffman and Badar's goal of reducing stigma related to EBD, as they believe that mental health, and treatment for issues related to mental health, should not be refuted by the public at large. As stated in the article discussion: ''We believe special education for students with EBD needs to become a lot better and, in the process, might become considerably less stigmatizing'' (p. 24). The question remains, how can this goal be achieved? Kamphaus and DiStefano seek to provide some recommendations regarding potentially fruitful research and discussions that would be productive areas for this journal to pursue as the field progresses towards the goal of lessening stigma related to EBD.
Council for Children with Behavioral Disorders. Council for Exceptional Children, 1110 North Glebe Road, Arlington, VA 22201-5704. Tel: 612-276-0140; Fax: 612-276-0142; Web site: http://www.ccbd.net/publication/behavioraldisorders
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Opinion Papers; Journal Articles
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A