Physical and Health Disabilities

Mark Goldstein SPED 301

Disabilities defined by the Government

Physical Disability: A severe orthopedic impairment that adversely affects a child's educational performance that can be caused by congenital anomaly or disease.

Health Disability: Having limited strength, vitality, or alertness, including a heightened alertness to environmental stimuli, that results in limited alertness with respect to the educational environment that is due to chronic or acute health problems and adversely affects a child's educational performance.

Characteristics of these disabilities

Physical: The orthopedic impairment must be severe and affect educational personal performance adversely. There are two categories: Neuromotor impairments which are conditions caused by damage to the central nervous system (limits muscular control) and Muscular/skeletal conditions which are impairments that affect the limbs or muscles that have trouble controlling their movements.

Health: The health impairment must result in limited strength, vitality, or alertness, must be due to chronic or acute health problems, and must affect educational performance adversely. There are two categories: Chronic Illnesses and Infectious Diseases.

Prevalence Rate

Although 11% of all students in the United States receive special education services, a very small percentage, 0.09%, of these students have physical disabilities and 1.38% have health disabilities.

Major Characteristics causing Learning Interference

Physical: According to, the major cause of learning interference is merely getting to the classroom itself.

Health: According to, the major cause of learning interference is being unable to participate in the school related activity (i.e. being absent from school).[user-raw]/11-07/physicaldifficulties_1.pdf

Living. For the physically disabled.
The IDEA's Special Education Categories: Other Health Impairment

Appropriate data based classroom accommodations

Universal Design Features: Create flexible seating arrangements, Provide safe and secure space to store AT devices.

Instructional Accommodations: Extended time, abbreviated assignments, flexible due dates, note takers.

Testing Accommodations: Read items to the student, read or simplify directions, provide alternative settings for test-taking.

Instructional Technology: Use distance education, Skype or teleconference important lectures and class discussion.

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Home Accommodations

Having multiple appliances (one refrigerator, washing machine) and furniture (couch, bed) on each floor.

Having a single level home or apartment on the first floor.

Having a handicapped parking sticker for the car so there is ease of travel.

Website Resources

This website is a forum (social mentoring) that allows people suffering from spinal impairments to post their feelings and ideas to other fellow sufferers.

This website has many features, but one is that there is a service known as Infocomm Accessibility Centre which is a class that teaches children with disabilities to use technology in order to complete daily tasks on the computer.

This website explains how the telephone app "icomm" works for toddlers that have difficulty talking.