April Muñoz and daughter Ashley take their message to the streets Friday, June 7, 2013 in Reseda, where they urged residents to protest LAUSD s plan to phase out some of its special-education centers. (Dean Musgrove/Staff Photographer)
Los Angeles Unified will shift hundreds of disabled students from special-education centers to traditional schools this fall as it accelerates efforts to integrate youngsters with physical and developmental handicaps.
The initiative calls for merging four special-education centers with nearby traditional schools and reconfiguring others, with more changes planned in the years ahead. In addition, all preschoolers who might previously have been enrolled in special-ed centers will start their schooling at traditional campuses instead.
Officials say the changes are necessary in order to comply with federal and state laws, as well as a consent decree that requires LAUSD to reduce the number of special-needs students in stand-alone centers and increase the amount of time the kids spend with their nondisabled peers