Special Education Children

Tiffany Johnson, a special-education teacher, got a large raise after earning the rating "highly effective" for two years in a row.

WASHINGTON — During her first six years of teaching in this city’s struggling schools, Tiffany Johnson got a series of small raises that brought her annual salary to $63,000, from about $50,000. This year, her seventh, Ms. Johnson earns $87,000.

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Last month, the Council for Court Excellence published sobering statistics in its report, “Unlocking Employment Opportunity for Previously Incarcerated Persons in the District of Columbia.”

The council found that the unemployment rate for ex-offenders in Washington, D.C., is as high as 46 percent. According to the report, 8,000 individuals were released from prison or jail into the District last year, and it is anticipated that about 4,000 of these individuals will re-offend, finding themselves back behind bars in the next three years.

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Policy Brief Discusses Slight Enrollment Decline, 17 Percent Increase in Pell Grant Need

WASHINGTON, Dec. 20, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Record-breaking enrollment increases have been the norm at community colleges for the last four years, but now, it appears that enrollment is leveling off. According to a new policy brief released today by the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC), there has been an enrollment decrease of almost one percent since fall 2010.

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A federal judge ruled in November that the Washington, DC, school system has not fulfilled its duty to provide special education services to its eligible preschool-age children, calling for additional future court oversight because of “persistent failure to live up to their statutory obligations, a failure that works a severe and lasting harm on one of society’s most vulnerable populations—disabled preschool children—is deeply troubling to the court.”

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DC Public Schools recently opened a second facility to serve DC parents who are concerned that their preschool-age child may have a disability or a developmental delay. However, as a judge’s ruling made clear last week, ineffective managers of these facilities are allowing children with special needs to fall through the cracks.

This is not only tragic for these children, but extremely expensive when DCPS identifies their special needs much later.

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