LDA has issued formal positions on the following topics:
Right to an Evaluation of a Child for Special Education Services (February 2013)
Right to an Evaluation of a Child for Special Education Services Parents who are aware their child is having a difficult time with reading, mathematics, written expression or other aspects of school work might suspect that the child has a learning disability (LD), also known as specific learning disabilities, and may be in need of special education services. As a parent, guardian or advocate, you have a legal right to request that your public school evaluate your child for special education.
What Are Learning Disabilities? (Updated October 2012)
Learning disabilities may be defined in practical, medical and legal terms. The common theme in all three definitions: A learning disability is a disorder in one or more basic psychological processes that may manifest itself as an imperfect ability in certain areas of learning, such as reading, written expression, or mathematics.
Read more in our two-page position paper.
Full Inclusion of All Students with Learning Disabilities in the Regular Education Classroom (Updated June 2012)
“Full inclusion,” “full integration,” “unified system,” and “inclusive education” are terms used to describe a popular policy/practice in which all students with disabilities, regardless of the nature or the severity of the disability and need for related services, receive their total education within the regular education classroom in their home school. The Learning Disabilities Association of America does not support full inclusion or any policies that mandate the same placement, instruction, or treatment for ALL students with learning disabilities.
Response to Intervention (RTI) has far reaching implications for children with SLD. It is imperative that LDA responds to this initiative, supporting those components of RTI which can benefit individuals with Specific Learning Disabilities and identifying other components that are not in their best interest.
LDA is concerned about the numbers of individuals with learning
disabilities who have not learned to read and are currently not
learning to read in school. According to the U.S. Department of
Education, 1 in 5 American adults is functionally illiterate. Three-fourths
of the unemployed lack sufficient skills to function successfully
in the nation's work force. There are many reasons for illiteracy
- one cause is neurologically-based learning disabilities which
have not been recognized and/or dealt with appropriately.
LDA recognizes the important role that state-wide assessment of learning outcomes have in raising academic standards for students and documenting educational accountability for the public. For students with learning disabilities, however, such assessments present both needed opportunities and new barriers. It is imperative, therefore, that the needs and rights of students with learning disabilities are protected whenever state-wide assessments are implemented.
LDA strongly supports efforts to eliminate violence in American schools. LDA agrees that students, including students with learning disabilities, whose violent behavior is a danger to themselves or others must be immediately removed from the current school setting. LDA also supports current law which ensures that students with learning disabilities so removed remain entitled to a free appropriate public education, as provided through the Individualized Education Program process.