Special Education Advocates Hopeful for Biden Administration
December 9, 2020
As the first presidential candidate in decades to include full funding of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) as a campaign goal, President-elect Joe Biden has promised to make an effort to deliver billions of dollars of additional federal funding to special education programs across the nation. Advocates, who say that 14% of students nationwide receive some degree of special education services, point to disruption of the pandemic, along with evidence that remote learning has been perhaps most challenging for students with disabilities, as reasons why the federal government ought to fulfill its legal obligation to fund up to 40% of special education costs at the school and district levels. In California, for example, the federal government currently only contributes roughly 8.4% of special education costs, with local district and state funding comprising the remainder.