Special education took root in the United States of America as at 1975. The program was aspired and passed by the United States congress body in order to cater for individual students with disabilities. People are formally different in the society. This difference has often shifted to differences in the levels of performances and delivery of instructional programs as part of learning among these students. As such, the congress of the United States of America took a step to curb criminalities which were evident in the educational sectors of the government. In the early times of growth and development of equality among people, schools encountered a number of problems as regards learners who appeared to have innate difficulties in their approach to learning. Discrimination towards students with special needs was imminent. Moreover, there were many struggles in meeting the needs which were of concern to such group of individuals within a learning environment. Therefore, history has it that program to administratively cater for learners with disabilities look back to ancient times.
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History has it that special education has often been a major concern in the entire United States of America. The federal laws ensure that it is the responsibility of the states to provide special education as in consistence with the standards of the federal law and reception of the federal funds. The federal law was consistent with ensuring quality education for all American citizens. As such, learners with special need began to receive special attention as at this time (Reynolds & Fletcher-Janzen, 2002).
The congress passed an act called the Education for All Handicapped Children Act in 1975. The Education for All Handicapped Children Act ensures that every student accesses free and public education within a least restrictive environment. In order to fulfill this act, the congress passed a statement which claimed and gave roles to a team of professionals who hail from the educational agency. These professionals were supposed to meet with parents of whom the students are characterized by a need to have a particular specification of education. As such, the professionals were entitled to development and implementation of goals and objectives which will ensure that these students have studied according to the placement, accommodations of testing, and modification of programs in all categories of teach (Kuhn, 1996). These facilities and publications were central or centered to the individual development of the student in need. For instance, it was advised and passed that special education programs as counseling were crucial to managing the state of development and behavior among many learners in the states. Parents were made to be part of the multidisciplinary team which ensured that learners and other students with disabilities were able to make it to the higher levels of achievement as ascribed in the state constitution. Other agencies to be part of the educational process for the disabled include the agency professionals. Educational placement is a critical feature which was widely discussed and applied in the modern sectors of education as regards disabled learners.
Individualized education program is a program which was set up by the congress in order to cater for the rising need for special education among many learners in the US schools. Within this individualized education program, students with disabilities are entitled to a number of precepts which boost their skill and ability to access learning just like their fellow normal students. Students with disabilities are supposed to receive special educational services as at their local school or district. This was supposed to take place between the ages of three all the way to eighteen or twenty one (May, 2001). There are various categories which were supposed to be met by the student in order to guarantee him or her to special education. Some of them include developmental disability, autism, specifications in certain parts of disability, impairment in the intellect, disability in behavior and/or emotional characteristics, disability in speech and language, blindness or deafness, impairment in visual capabilities, impairment in hearing, physical impairment, and health-related impairments within the student.
When students are identified and categorized within these levels of impairment, they are prepared for special education. Some of the preparations include mainstreamed educational programs, set goals and objectives, and other personalized programs as self care programs, training in various levels of impairment as the physical, speech, social, and vocational training. Within these programs are placements which ensure that the students at hand are duly assisted to meet the needs and requirements of the school (Mertens, 2010).
How and why have the protocols for special education assessment changed over time in the United States
In 1947, the American association on mental deficiency held a convention which saw an upbringing of special education programs in the US schools. This body was started during the human rights movement age, and has since undergone varied changes in protocol. In 1950s, there were the upcoming of other new protocols as the United Palsy Association together with John F Kennedy’s panel which centered on mental retardation among young and old people. Learning programs were directed at bringing unity to varied human needs during those old days. Much emphasis was not concerned with how the future needs and academic demands would be.
Disabilities are often seen as abilities. In many sectors of learning among the United States of American citizens, having the ability and know how to manage and lead learners through a learning process is a huge boost to the growth and development in the learning characteristics of the disabled. However, the protocols needed to shift due to an ever fluctuating number of the disabled students, some with varied levels of need, together with regular change in modes of instruction delivery among schools. Students come with varied levels of special needs. From childhood to adulthood, many children with special needs are supposed to portray aspects of special hood in their mannerisms and code of conduct so that they are able to meet the requirements of being special in need. Nonetheless, many children have often fallen short of their characteristics in many schools in the United States of America. Children have grown and developed without being realized in their areas of specialties. As such, such students have lived to struggle in trying to make ends meet.
Special education has been undergoing rampant changes in its sphere of life and maintenance among protocols set by the US congress and government. In the United States of America, educational equality is subtle at all spheres of life. Children in school are accorded the best possible services in order to meet the demands of life as they grow and develop. In the course of time, the nations have often been pushed to the corner in order to yield to the demands of the society at large. Being an individual or student with special needs gives the government more work of trying to bail out and strike similarity in the levels of growth and development besides performance of such individuals. As such, measures of assessment, which often bring out the varied characteristics of these people, have been subjected to change with time. Disabilities keep changing in phase and approach, hence, the government has been put at a downturn of ensuring a continuum in the quality of services and assessment approaches governing students with special needs.
Moreover, changes in protocol have perceived possibilities in higher levels of inability performances among students in various schools. Disabilities often result in instability of growth and development among nations. Cases of poor performances registered among the state societies elicit more action needed to cater for the disabled in the society.
How have the changes in special education assessment had overall positive impact
Changes in special education assessment have had overall positive impact among many states in the United States of America. The gradual changes have resulted in the present day stability in programs which cater for students with special needs in the US schools. First, various levels of disabilities have been noted. For instance, the government, through its acts on education has managed to exemplify that there are various categories of learner special needs as autism, specifications in certain parts of disability, impairment in the intellect, disability in behavior and/or emotional characteristics, disability in speech and language, blindness or deafness, impairment in visual capabilities, impairment in hearing, physical impairment, and health-related impairments within the student (Armstrong & Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, 2009). With this knowledge, various programs, through the government intervention, have been set up and implemented to cater for these categories of student needs.
The changes have made education in the US a flexible and easily accessible endeavor among the Americans. When integrated with its methodological approaches, the state has managed to meet the needs of many students as they engage in learning programs. Moreover, education assessment has taken a firm grip on the various levels of achievement among learners and institutions. As such, it is quite evident to find established institutions which cater for students with special needs in the United States of America.
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