"Are Hispanic, Asian, Native American, or Language-Minority Children Overrepresented in Special Education?"
Professor George Farkas publishes with colleagues in Exceptional Children: "Are Hispanic, Asian, Native American, or Language-Minority Children Overrepresented in Special Education?"
We conducted a best-evidence synthesis of 22 studies to examine whether systemic bias explained minority disproportionate overrepresentation in special education. Of the total regression model estimates, only 7/168 (4.2%), 14/208 (6.7%), 2/37 (5.4%), and 6/91 (6.6%) indicated statistically significant overrepresentation for Hispanic, Asian, Native American, and English language learner (ELL) or language-minority children, respectively. Among studies with the strongest internal and external validity, none of the 90 estimates (ie, 0%) indicated overrepresentation attributable to racial or ethnic bias. Of the 18 estimates for language-minority and ELL children combined, only 3 (16.7%) indicated overrepresentation attributable to language use. Two of the 4 ELL-specific estimates (50%) indicated that children receiving English-as-a-second-language services may be overrepresented in special education. Overall, and replicating findings from a prior best-evidence synthesis, this synthesis indicated that children are underidentified as having disabilities based on their race or ethnicity and language use.
Morgan, P. L., Farkas, G., Cook, M., Strassfeld, N. M., Hillemeier, M. M., Pun, W. H., Wang, Y., & Schussler, D. L. (2018). Are Hispanic, Asian, Native American, or language-minority children overrepresented in Special Education? Exceptional Children. doi: 10.1177/0014402917748303