ADMINISTRATIVE ASPECT OF SPECIAL EDUCATION
The Law provides for a free appropriate public education (FAPE) of exceptional children by assuring the financial support of teachers of special education and the administration of the program. The administration of special education at the macro level is assumed by the government and is usually carried out as one of the functions of the Department of Education (or a similar body). In the Philippines, the Department of Education (DepEd) is the principal government agency responsible for education and manpower development. The Department is primarily in charge of the formulation, planning, implementation and coordination of the policies, standards, regulations, plans, programs and projects in areas of formal and non-formal education. It provides for the establishment and maintenance of a complete, adequate and integrated system of education relevant to the goals of national development through the public school system; and it also supervises all basic education institutions run by the private sector.
The current Department structure consists of the Central Office and the field offices which consist of the regional and sub-regional levels. There are field offices in sixteen regions, each headed by a Regional Director; 157 provincial and city schools divisions, each headed by a School Division Superintendent; and 2,227 school districts headed by a District Supervisor. The Special Education Division is lodged at the Bureau of Elementary and performs the following functions: formulates policies, plans and programs for the preparation of instructional materials; evaluation of programs in special education; conducts studies and develops standards of programs and services for special learners; plans for prototype in-service education programs to upgrade the competencies of administrators, supervisors, coordinators, teachers as well as the non-teaching special education personnel; and establishes/strengthens linkages with agencies concerned with the education and welfare of children with special needs.
The Regional Director has the overall responsibility for the administration and supervision of special education at the regional level. The School Superintendent has the over-all responsibility for the administration and supervision of special education at the Division level and is assisted by the Division Supervisor. The District Supervisor supervises the school principals and other school administrators at the district level. The administrator of special education is appointed based on qualification standards set by the Department and provided with appropriations from the national funds. The Department also sets up a minimum standard for the qualification of teachers, and establishes the criteria for the selection of pupils for special education.
In other countries like the US, education is primarily a State and local responsibility. The U.S. Department of Education is the agency of the federal government that establishes policy for, administers and coordinates most federal assistance to education. The Federal States and communities are responsible for establishing public and private schools and colleges; developing curricula; setting requirements for enrollment and graduation; determining state education standards; and developing and implementing testing measures to verify if schools are meeting their education standards. The structure of education finance in America reflects this predominant State and local role. Of an estimated $1.1 trillion being spent nationwide on education at all levels for school year 2009-2010, a substantial majority will come from State, local, and private sources. The Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) is lodged at the U.S. Department of Education and is responsible for monitoring state and local compliance to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) by providing leadership and...
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