About 11% of students in California receive Special Education services each year. As the chart below shows, the majority of these students have a specific learning disability. About a quarter of Special Education students fall into 10 less common categories that often represent more serious disabilities, including orthopedic, visual, or other health impairment; mental retardation; emotional disturbance; hard of hearing; deaf; multiple disability; traumatic brain injury; and deaf-blindness.
Schools in California receive extra funding for students in Special Education based on their enrollment rather than on the number of Special Education students each district serves or the services students receive.
In 2009–10, schools served 680,164 special-needs students.
Data: California Department of Education (CDE), 2/11
Adapted from EdSource’s 2011 Resource Cards on California Schools.