Easter Seals says that each year there are about 5 million children at risk for developmental delays, but only about 1 million actually get early intervention services
Among the work going on now is a review of practices across the district that will take inventory of the very best of these, then share them, something that doesn't always happen in the frenetic pace of a school year.
In at least two cases, parents of children with autism fitted their children with recording devices to capture what happens in school. In both cases, students were subjected to hearing inappropriate conversations. One student was recorded being spanked repeatedly.
The U.S. Education Department says that "private schools whose students or teachers participate in federally assisted programs conducted by a local school district are not grant recipients and are not directly subject to the federal civil rights requirements.
The Education Department's office for civil rights was investigating in part to see if there was a difference in whether and what services students were offered because of their race.
The rules about the use of these emergency interventions should apply to all students, not just those with disabilities, these techniques be used only for emergency or safety reasons, not as a behavior modification tool, an advisory group said.
The federal government is expected to cut the money from South Carolina's share of federal special education dollars on Oct. 1, a penalty for past cuts the state made to its own budget for working with students with disabilities.
School boards shouldn't have to provide services to students with disabilities at private schools who would get services under Section 504 of the federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973 if they attended a public school, the National School Boards Association argues.
"Racism is endemic," one university professor says of assigning students of color to certain types of disabilities. "Many of us who have been victims are perpetrators of it."
By some measures, 70 percent of children with autism have also been labeled as intellectually disabled.