SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP)- California officials have warned 49 school districts that they have an unusually high number of black students in special education programs who are labeled emotionally disturbed.
Letters sent by the state Department of Education in July told the districts their special ed classes were "significantly disproportionate" racially during a four-year period ending last year, The Sacramento Bee reported (sacb.ee/OEDDh5).
The agency sends letters to school districts annually if they have a disproportionate number of students of any particular race in special education programs. Those districts must develop intervention plans that will be monitored by the state.
"They need to review their policies, procedures and practices to make sure there isn't any bias or discrimination," said Fred Balcom, director of special education programs for the California Department of Education.
Previously, only about 20 California districts received the "significantly disproportionate" designation each year. But a new federal formula for determining compliance more than doubled the number facing sanctions, Balcom said.
Topping the latest list is the San Juan Unified School District serving Carmichael, Orangevale, Citrus Heights, Fair Oaks, Rancho Cordova and parts of Sacramento.
In the San Juan district, roughly one of every 35 black students – 101 individuals – was designated emotionally disturbed last year, compared with one out of 80 statewide, according to data from the Department of Education.
In 2004, Congress directed states to require school districts with a "significantly disproportionate" number of minority students in special education programs to dedicate 15 percent of their federal allotment for educating special ed students to preventive programs.
Schools often give the special ed label to students who may present a challenge for teachers for other reasons, said Arun Ramanathan, executive director of Education Trust-West, a research group that focuses on poor, minority students.
"Designating a student as emotionally disturbed is an easy way to exit a troublesome child out of school," Ramanathan said. "It's a good way to move a kid from the school and into a special-day classroom."
Being classified as emotionally disturbed gives students access to specialized services and counseling, but the label can hurt them too, he said.
"It follows them all the way through life," Ramanathan said.
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (10/15-10/21)
31 photos Launch gallery
1. Just a NY girl with BIG dreams....
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2. HAPPY CHILDREN=QUALITY PARENTING. We don't always see eye to eye on everything and that's normal. We're human beings. But we come together and do it right for what's important, the kids. We are not enemies, we are parents. And we are parents 1st. S/O to @monyettashaw for making Mason's bday memorable. S/O to @itscrystalsmith at home taking care of our other lil' Prince. ❤️❤️❤️ THIS IS WHAT CO-PARENTING LOOKS LIKE. #Blessed #Happy #AboveTheDrama #BiggerThanUs
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3. So happy to finally be able to share with you all that I’m the new Global Brand Ambassador for @Revlon! Follow my day on RevlonSnaps. Yay! Choose Love, Everybody! #RevlonXCiara #chooselove #ad
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4. Glam on point!!!@makeupbymotoko & @shaylinjoneshair #easybreezy @lifetimetv #beachesmovie #january2017 😘
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5. ✨True love ✨📸: @jessiemarrerophotography
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7. Today was not easy..but by the grace of God we all got through it. Words cannot express our gratitude for all of your Prayers, Positive thoughts and Support for us throughout the years. Tommy will be missed but most certainly never forgotten...And PLEASE don't ask "Where's Martin?.." he was there too...just not in this picture. Lol! God bless you all.. #LoveConquersAll #MartinShow
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9. West coast get ready for #RockyHorror. I will be live tweeting again. #letsdothetimewarpagain
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10. #THEKEYS pre order yours now ... Available everywhere #NOV22 #WeTheBest 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑
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11. We about to ROCK at #KCABlackBall!! All for our life-changing effort to end 🌎 AIDS.
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12. Today's #SNAPJACK is brought to you by @yazzthegreatest 😂😂😂💋💋💋
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13. Damn girl you kinda old to be headed to the Go Go. You coming in at the age they leaving. LMAO
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14. Daddy daycare B-Boxin with @acewellstucker @shopraisingace
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15. #FBF Naviyd & URV "LIL MONSTERS"
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16. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE BIGGEST LEGENDS IN OUR HIPHOP HISTORY! @snoopdogg CONTINUED BLESSING AND LOVE FAMILY!!!!! REAL OG!
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17. Thank you for a beautiful night VSU! Let's do it again! #HOMECOMING
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18. Had a great time this morning with my familia Erica, Griff & Truth!!
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19. Check out my interview on @essence facebook live. #inmyownwords #nycpromo #day2
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20. #She💋 #tbt #TheCoveAtTheAtlantis #DawgPawsAndAll
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21. Bae #retailtherapy
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22. Why me and @coryhardrict got the same pose... and notee... new mouth #naked
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23. When my husband is my personal 'hype-man'! it kills me every time! 💜😂 #WHATNOW #lostfiles📷
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24. Diggy Simmons
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25. Hand full of @jacquieaiche 💙💎💍 @esnail_la 💅🏾
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26. SuperSoulers! You can watch my interview with Carl Lentz live from my Facebook page, tomorrow at 11a ET| 8a PT. #SuperSoulSunday
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27. 💋 .. When the friendship is easy like Sunday morning. ☀️
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28. Sunday mornings are the best........... hugs and cuddles with my angel
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29. #huggar16 #hellohuggars
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30. My gym is everywhere!.. #RnBMoney #TheGeneral 📸: @twelvepastseven
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31. Nothing I would rather be doing... Rocko setting up our movie, Romelō working on a puzzle & Laiyah singing and sharing all she's learning at school... I'm so grateful for the joy they've brought into my life ... Praying for peace , joy & love in the home of EVERY family ♥️ #HeadScarfPJSunday LOL 😂
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