Report shows 1 in 6 Kansas students with learning disabilities drop out

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WASHINGTON (AP) This year’s New ‘State of Learning Disabilities’ report shines a spotlight on issues affecting Kansas students with learning disabilities.

According to the national report, 16% of Kansas students who have learning disabilities drop out of high school. More than 24,000 children in Kansas receive special education for learning disabilities and most of these students spend most of the school day in general education classrooms.

The report went on to say, that inclusion is beneficial, but in a nationwide survey many general educators said they don’t have the training or the resources to meet the needs of diverse learners.

“Children with learning and attention issues are as smart as their peers and with the right support can achieve at high levels, but a lack of early or effective interventions leads too many kids on a downward spiral,” says Mimi Corcoran, President and CEO of NCLD.

The report also states that 24,406 children were identified by Kansas schools in 2015-2016 as having learning disabilities, which is the largest of the 13 disability categories covered under special education law. Students with disabilities are more than twice as likely to be suspended as those without disabilities, and the loss of instructional time increases the risk of academic failure and school aversion.

In Kansas, 61% of school suspensions among special education students involve children with learning disabilities or Oral Health Impairments.

“The data in this report should be a call to action, so that individuals with learning and attention issues receive the instruction and support they need to succeed in school and in life,” said Corcoran.