autism

Recent Articles

MPS Black student suspensions twice state average

 

 

The district aims for more consistent discipline among schools, teachers
 
 

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

 

According to Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) data from the last two school years, the suspension rates of Black students in Minneapolis Public Schools (MPS) are twice that of Black students suspended statewide. Additionally, more Black students were suspended in 2011-12 (4,336) than in 2010-11 (4,305). However, a Minneapolis teacher who spoke on the condition of anonymity believes that the district suspension numbers at some schools are “deliberately manipulated. “They will have an all-out bloody fight between a first grader and a third grader, and [school officials] don’t want the kids suspended,” observed the teacher. “What I’m seeing is there is no black-or-white spelled-out policy for infractions that leads to suspensions. Continue Reading →

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Mother of autistic child fights for equal care

Proposed laws could disadvantage Black and  low-income people

 

By Michelle Lawrence

Contributing Writer

 

“State legislators want to create two different healthcare policies for kids with autism: one that generously covers the privately insured, and the other that gives minimal coverage to the poor and publicly insured, but both using state funds,” says Idil Abdull of Burnsville and mother of a 10-year-old son with autism. At age 11, when Abdull came to the United States from her native country of Somalia, she knew very little English and very little about American politics. “The only thing I knew about America was Superman and Rocky [the movie], she says.”

Some 20 years plus since arriving on North American shores, Abdull is now very fluent in both English and the parlance of American politics. “If nothing else, I know how to be loud,” she says. Like many other families, Abdull says she went through a period of denial about autism. Continue Reading →

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Retired baseball player brings attention to autism

 

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

 

 

One in 88 U.S. children — boys are about five times more likely than girls — is diagnosed with autism according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). However, the federal research agency also points out that the greatest rate of increase is among Blacks and Latinos. According to AutisminBlack.com, there are several reasons why Black children are not diagnosed and treated earlier, including lack of access to health care, distrust of medical professionals, racism and class. It also reports that too often Black children with autism are more often misdiagnosed with other disorders or behavioral problems, especially young Black boys at school. “There are so many dynamics to autism,” says former major league baseball player Reggie Sanders, who started the Reggie Sanders Foundation in 1992 primarily to help provide resources and promote more public awareness on autism. Continue Reading →

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