When a child is diagnosed with a special need, whether it is mental, physical or learning-based, parents are often faced with the difficult decision of whether they should send the child to public or private school. While each type of school has benefits to offer the special education student, this decision is often a very personal one that must be undertaken with a great deal of research and thought. In addition, parents should not feel bad if they start the child in one school and end up switching to another type. Often, the best way to understand the services that are offered is to experience them for oneself.
Public schools in the United States have a plethora of benefits for special education students. They often have more specialized services and educational techniques than those private schools have, which is usually due to better funding. While classroom sizes in public schools are often larger than they are in private, this does not mean that the child will not receive the attention that he or she requires. Because public schools are required to create IEPs for each of their special needs students, these children can expect to receive the necessary support regardless of the size of the classroom. In addition, they often have a great social experience because of the larger number of students.
On the other hand, private school may be a better choice for some families. While private schools are not required to have an IEP, many of them have a similar document called a Services Plan that they create for each special needs student. The Services Plan is often drawn up after the school receives public funding due to a public school district having sent a child to them due to limited resources at the public level. However, the Services Plan is not usually as comprehensive as the IEP is, and the private school may not be able to offer as many services as a public school could. On the other hand, parents may want to consider a private school that caters specifically to special needs students because these schools often have the fullest range of services.
Some parents may feel that their special needs children are not receiving an appropriate level of educational support no matter where they go. In these cases, turn to Newman Aaronson Vanaman for legal support.