May 2016 Research Roundup

Written by NCLD Staff | 3 years ago

Here’s a summary of two recent reports that affect people of all ages with learning and attention issues.

‘Preventing Bullying’ Addresses the Damage That Bullying Can Cause

A new report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine advises that it’s time to recognize bullying as a serious public health issue. 

“Bullying is not developmentally appropriate; it should not be considered a normal part of the typical social grouping that occurs throughout a child’s life.”

According to “Preventing Bullying Through Science, Policy, and Practice,” people with disabilities, including those with learning disabilities are more vulnerable to bullying.

  • Data suggest that students with disabilities, as a whole, are up to 1.5 times more likely to be bullied than youth without disabilities
  • 19 percent of students with specific learning disabilities experienced high levels of victimization.

For more information about addressing bullying with your child, here are a few resources from

To get tools and resources that can help you address bullying in your school, whether you’re an educator or a parent, check out The Bully Project’s tools and resources section.

To download the full NAS report, click here.  


2016 Building a Grad Nation Report

The 2016 Building a Grad Nation Report reveals that the U.S. has achieved an 82.3 percent high school graduation rate—a record high.

But, the report, from Civic Enterprises and the Everyone Graduates Center at Johns Hopkins University, also examines gaps in achievement for students with disabilities. Thirty-three states graduate less than 70 percent of their students with disabilities. Six of those states graduate less than 50 percent of students with disabilities.

“It’s encouraging that more students with disabilities than ever are graduating high school, but these numbers are still much lower than they should be,” says Lindsay Jones, NCLD’s vice president, chief policy and advocacy officer.

The path to graduation does not begin in high school. To improve graduation rates and student outcomes, states must begin screening early, ensure that general educators are prepared to meet the needs of students with disabilities and continue to fully include students with disabilities in accountability systems and require interventions where these students are falling behind.”

The report also emphasizes that to reach Grad Nation’s goal of a 90 percent on-time graduation rate by 2020, educators and student advocates need to focus on the needs of underrepresented students—including students with disabilities.

From the report: “To graduate students equitably means focusing on students of color, those with disabilities, English-language learners and students from low-income homes. Despite all the progress, these subgroups still graduate at lower rates than other students.”

Jones says helping students develop strong self-advocacy skills is one way to do that. “These students will need to speak about their challenges and ask for the supports and accommodations they need. As the nation takes a hard look at how to reach graduation goals and help all students succeed, they must consider the role and importance of self-advocacy.”

Robert Balfanz, a member of our Professional Advisory Board, co-authored the report, which you can find here.