Mobile Digest of Education Statistics, 2017

Elementary and Secondary Schools

Enrollment in Programs for Children With Disabilities

The percentage of students (3 to 21 years old) served by federally supported special education programs rose from 8 percent to 14 percent between 1976–77 and 2004–05, and then decreased to 13 percent in 2015–16. Between 2004–05 and 2015–16, the percentage of students identified as having autism increased from 0.4 percent to 1.2 percent of enrollment; and the percentage of those with specific learning disabilities decreased from 5.7 percent to 4.6 percent of enrollment (see Digest of Education Statistics, 2017, table 204.30).

Table 7. Number and percentage of 3- to 21-year-olds served in programs for children with disabilities: Selected years, 1976–77 through 2015–16

Year Number of students with disabilities, in thousands Students with disabilities as a percent of public enrollment1 Students with specific learning disabilities as a percent of public enrollment1

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