Cross-cohort evidence of disparities in service receipt for speech or language impairments

Paul L. Morgan, George Farkas, Marianne M. Hillemeier, Hui Li, Wik Hung Pun, Michael Cook

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


We examined the extent to which disparities in the receipt of special education services for speech or language impairments (SLIs) on the basis of race, ethnicity, or language use by kindergarten-when the delivery of these services might be expected to be most effective-have changed over a 12-year period in the United States. Logistic regression modeling of 2 nationally representative cohorts (N = 16,800 and 12,080) indicated that children who are Black (covariate-adjusted odds ratios = 0.39 and 0.54) or from non-English-speaking households (covariate-adjusted odds ratios = 0.57 and 0.50) continue to be less likely to receive services for SLIs. Hispanic children are now less likely to receive these services (covariate adjusted odds ratio = 0.54) than otherwise similar non-Hispanic White children. Disparities in special education service receipt for SLIs attributable to race, ethnicity, and language presently occur in the United States and are not explained by many potential confounds.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)27-41
Number of pages15
JournalExceptional Children
Issue number1
StatePublished - Aug 1 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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