Sarah Palin’s Record as Alaska Gov Showed Support for Special Needs Kids

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Oct 27, 2008   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Sarah Palin’s Record as Alaska Gov Showed Support for Special Needs Kids

by Steven Ertelt Editor
October 27
, 2008

Washington, DC ( — Sarah Palin gave a major policy address last week on how she will be an advocate for special needs children should she become the nation’s next vice-president. But, does her record as the governor of Alaska demonstrate that support or is it merely an election ploy to gain votes?

The answer appears to be a resounding yes — as the Palin administration put more money behind education and support services for disabled children and their families.

During her speech Palin said, "as governor, I’ve succeeded in securing additional funding and assistance for students with special needs. By 2011, I will have tripled the funding available to these students."

That appears to be the case.

Overall funding for special needs students has increased every year since Sarah Palin entered office as governor. Palin increased the amount from $219 million in 2007 to a projected $276 million in 2009.

In March, Palin signed a bill that will nearly triple per-pupil funding over three years for special needs students with high-cost requirements.

The per-pupil funding grew in Alaska under Palin’s administration from $26,900 in fiscal year 2008 to $73,840 devoted to fiscal year 2011.

Palin has also directed state funds to other special needs programs.This funding includes $500,000 for diagnostic services for autistic children and $250,000 for training in early autism intervention in her fiscal year 2009 budget.

In an April interview with Education Week the executive director of the Association of Alaska School Boards called the new funding a "historic event."

Carl Rose "praised the changes in funding for rural schools and students with special needs as a ‘historic event,’ and said the finance overhaul would bring more stability to district budgets," the publication reported.

As a result of her dedication to disabled children, who become frequent victims of abortion, families of special needs kids have been flocking to Palin rallies across the nation.

NBC News reports: "But in the sea of faces, nearly everywhere she goes, she encounters people who aren’t really there for the politics. Families of children with Down syndrome have been flocking to Palin rallies. They come to shake her hand, grab a hug or snap a picture, drawn there, they say, because her story is theirs, too."

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