special education

Writer and illustrator Cece Bell has been creating children's books for over a decade, but in her latest, she finally turns to her own story — about growing up hearing-impaired, after meningitis left her "severely to profoundly deaf" at the age of 4.

The book, a mix of memoir, graphic novel and children's book, is called El Deafo. It's a funny, unsentimental tale that follows Cece from age 4 through elementary school, as she transforms from mild-mannered little girl into full-fledged superhero — the "El Deafo" of the title.

Chloe Burton

Chloe Burton had a great year in kindergarten.

Although she has autism, she had no problem learning in a general education classroom alongside her peers.

But in first grade, things went downhill. Chloe wandered the classroom instead of finishing her work.

KUOW Photo/Ann Dornfeld

As educational practice catches up with federal law that requires students learn in the least restrictive environment, an increasing number of students with autism and other disabilities are learning alongside their typically-developing peers in mainstream classrooms.

NASA

In New York, this school year was the first year neighborhood schools were required to accept students with special needs into regular classrooms. They've made the transition with the aid of high-tech gadgets. You can hear that story online.

Michelle Buetow says we could learn something from New York's experiment. She's co-president of Seattle's Special Education PTSA. She says although Seattle is a high-tech city, its approach to special education is decidedly low-tech. She says “it’s borderline criminal that a city built on high-tech resources has chosen not to fund these kinds of gadgets for students with special needs.” But school districts strapped for cash have struggled to find money for these kinds of technologies.

Full list of stories from KUOW Presents, June 5:

Interfaith Amigos
Flickr Photo/University of Denver

 State To Seattle Public Schools: Fix Problems In Special Ed
Seattle Public Schools receive $11 million per year from the federal government designated for special education. The district is now in a danger of losing that money if they don’t fix a number of problems identified by the State Superintendent of Public Instruction. The mandate came down last week. Where is Seattle Public Schools’ special ed program falling short? And what solutions are the state proposing? We’ll get some answers this morning from education reporter Ann Dornfeld.

The Interfaith Amigos On Religious Practices That Could Benefit The Non-Religious
Many people in our region are religious, and many are not. The Interfaith Amigos share the teachings, meditations and practices from their religious traditions that would be a positive addition to all of our lives, even the non-religious.

Greendays Gardening Panel
Our gardening panel includes a flower expert, native plant expert and vegetable gardening expert. They answer your gardening questions every Tuesday.   

Ryder on his first day of third grade.
Bridget Ambrose

Two-and-a-half years ago, KUOW brought you the story of Bridget Ambrose and her son Ryder. Ryder was in kindergarten at the time. He’s on the autism spectrum. At Ryder’s preschool, he’d gotten special education services like speech therapy and the social skills training that many kids with autism need to teach them how to interact with other kids.