At the Delaware House Education Committee meeting today, Delaware State Rep. Kim Williams’ House Bill 30, which would allow students with basic special education needs to receive extra funding in grades Kindergarten to 3rd grade, was unanimously released rom the committee.
The bill’s next stop is the House Appropriations Committee due to a $10 million fiscal note attached to it. My take on this: this should have never happened in the first place in Delaware. Part of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), reauthorized in 2004, states schools must have adequate resources available for students on an IEP. Delaware, in my opinion, is in Federal violation of this part of IDEA ever since Governor Jack Markell issued his Executive Order for needs-based funding and this necessary allotment didn’t go to these students.
Several parents have reported their children were denied IEPs in Delaware during these pivotal school years. The fact that there was no extra funding available for these students has caused many parents to wonder if this was why.
Several Delaware Superintendents voiced their support for the legislation indicating it would give these students the supports they need, especially since the rates are climbing for students with disabilities. Merv Daugherty, the Superintendent for Red Clay Consolidated, said his K-3 students in his school district are bigger than some of the other Delaware School Districts. No representatives from charter schools or charter school organizations spoke up about the legislation and it did not appear any were in attendance.