NEPC Review: Special Education and Distance Learning: Supporting Students through the Pandemic (ExcelinEd, June 2020)
A brief published by ExcelinED provides recommendations to education policy leaders for the delivery of special education services during the COVID-19 school closures. The recommendations, however, assume that current knowledge among school professionals is sufficient to make the desired special education and technological leaps. In fact, the necessary knowledge and capacity are barely emerging. Meanwhile, the recommendations do little to address the unequal distribution of resources in schools, which include access to well-prepared teachers and related services personnel qualified to teach students with disabilities, particularly using distance learning approaches. Given these concerns, coupled with the lack of research anchoring its recommendations, the brief offers little to policymakers or practitioners currently struggling to make distance learning work during the pandemic.