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The special ed teacher crisis, a controversial federal proposal affecting pay for Direct Support Professionals, a Hallmark Christmas movie shines a light on autism and more news for the week ending Nov. 18, 2023.


The number of students in special education has doubled over the past four decades so, which helps explain the growing shortage of special ed teachers nationwide. This week, The 74, a nonprofit news organization, has several reports that show the scope of the challenges and workarounds:

New York

Disability groups rally for higher wages, citing thousands of vacant positions Read about the Capitol rally that called on Gov. Kathy Hochul to invest in the Direct Support Professional workforce. (Times Union)

Inside the Pleasantville Cottage School controversy Another (very measured) look at Pleasantville Cottage School, a residential center for vulnerable and troubled children and teens that also serves individuals with I/DD. (lohud)

Outside of New York

Maine Rarely Sanctions Residential Care Facilities Even After Severe Abuse or Neglect Incidents From 2020 to 2022, residential care facilities were cited for rights violations and hundreds of other deficiencies. (

Knoxville Police Department launches program to improve safety for those with developmental or cognitive disabilities Another city helps smooth communication between first responders and the disability community. (


Disability Providers Warn Federal Overtime Pay Rule Could Jeopardize Services A new proposal could address one problem while creating others. (Disability Scoop)



A New Tool Helps Disabled People Track—and Shape—Laws That Impact Them Plain-language documents can make information more accessible to people with disabilities that affect cognition and memory. (Mother Jones)


Runner Among First with Down Syndrome Ever to Finish NYC Marathon: ‘Victory Dance at the Finish Line’ 33-year-old Kayleigh Williamson, who has also run 20 half-marathons, completed the iconic race with her mom by her side. (


Hallmark Movies & Mysteries Shines a Light on Autism in ‘A World Record Christmas’ They’re heeeere and by that, I mean Hallmark’s Christmas movies. (Parade)

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