City to Update Special Education Data

New York City's Education Department has signed a contract with a consulting company to update its method of tracking information about 190,000 special education students.

The five-year $55 million contract with the Maximus company of Virginia will overhaul an antiquated computer system and paper files that advocates say often result in children being denied services they need and that are required by law.

The Advocates for Children had sued the school system on behalf of students with disabilities. Its executive director, Kim Sweet, says the DOE's record-keeping is not accurate and up to date.

Linda Wernikoff, head of DOE's special education, says about 30 schools should be able to access the new system by fall, and that the entire system should be in operation by spring 2011.

The contract is expected to be officially announced Wednesday.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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