School system fails special needs kids

Many of our special needs students have limited opportunities to develop the necessary life skills to transition into productive adults

At the last Chilliwack Board of Education meeting, the superintendent presented the most recent graduation statistics.  He was pleased to report that the Chilliwack School District had shown improvement in its graduation rates.

One part of our student population that continues to have extremely poor graduation rates are our special needs students.  The school district receives significant additional funding from the Ministry of Education to support the achievement of these vulnerable students, yet the system is failing them.

Sadly, the poor graduation rates only tell part of the story.  Many of our special needs students have limited opportunities to develop the necessary life skills to transition into productive adults and end up leaving school with a bleak future in front of them.  The “system” might call them the “push-throughs”.

The problem is that the curriculum is not designed to fit the needs of our special needs students.  This situation needs to change and change quickly.

If we can not protect the interests of the most vulnerable students in our education system, how can we protect the interests of all students?

 

Don Davis

Parent of two students with autism

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