Thursday, August 30, 2012

Think About It Thursdays--Growing Number of High Needs Kids in Lower Grades

As most of my readers know, I was just moved to a new building in order to combine our districts 3 elementary MD units. Due to numbers we originally decided to split the kids by gradeand ended up with 2 K-2nd units and 1 3rd-5th unit. Since then our numbers in the K-2 units have increased even more! Now we have 15 kids split between the K-2 rooms, and 6 in the 3-5 room.

What is going on with these K-2 kids?! Not only is there more of them but their needs are significantly greater. This is especially true when it comes to the medically fragile kids. I have learned more about trachs, seizures, feeding tubes, Diastat, medicine pumps, and shunts than I ever imagined I would when I started!

We have a high military population and our local base (WPAFB) is known for having a program for families with children with special needs so this could very likely be the reason so many kids are flooding our rooms. But I was wondering if other elementary SpEds in other areas are seeing this significant increase in special needs within the younger grades too?

What do you think the cause of this increase is? I find it really interesting that the increase in my building is so significant from one three year band to the next!


Karlie said...

I have a significant range in student numbers. I have 2 first graders, 10 second graders, and 0 third graders. I have no idea what causes the crazy difference in numbers, but it's intriguing! If you figure out this mystery let me know:-D

We are ALL Special!

Lee in Pre said...

I've been teaching for 30ish years, and I do feel like there are more and more with medical issues that were not found in school in my early career. I have thought a lot about that and I believe that it may be because of medical advances. The children with these difficulties may not have survived as often in the past.