Here’s a little information about me (Jim Kauffman; for more about me, you can visit my Web site). I am now Professor Emeritus of Education at the University of Virginia, from which I retired in June, 2003 (although I’m still teaching a doctoral seminar and coordinating the doctoral program, which I will do through the 2005-2006 academic year). At UVA, I have been chair of the Department of Special Education, Associate Dean for Research, the Charles S. Robb Professor of Education, and the William Clay Parrish, Jr. Professor of Education.
I received my Ed.D. degree in special education from the University of Kansas in 1969. I am a past president of the Council for Children with Behavioral Disorders (CCBD, a division of the Council for Exceptional Children), and among the honors I’ve been given are the 2002 Outstanding Leadership Award from CCBD, the 1994 Research Award of the Council for Exceptional Children, and the 1991 Outstanding Service Award from the Midwest Symposium for Leadership in Behavioral Disorders. I’m also a former teacher in both general elementary and special education for students with emotional and behavioral disorders.
I’ve authored or co-authored numerous publications in special education, including the following recent or forthcoming books: Characteristics of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders of Children and Youth (8th edition, 2005), Cases in Emotional and Behavioral Disorders (2005), Learning Disabilities: Foundations, Characteristics, and Effective Teaching (3rd edition, 2005, with D. P. Hallahan, J. W. Lloyd, M. P. Weiss, & E. A. Martinez), Special Education: What It Is and Why We Need It (2005, with D. P. Hallahan), The Illusion of Full Inclusion: A Comprehensive Critique of a Current Special Education Bandwagon (2nd ed., 2005, edited with Daniel P. Hallahan), Exceptional Learners: Introduction to Special Education (10th ed., forthcoming about April with a 2006 copyright, with Daniel P. Hallahan), and Children and Youth with Emotional and Behavioral Disorders: A History of Their Education (forthcoming about July with a 2006 copyright, with Timothy J. Landrum).
I am a skeptic about nearly everything, as future blogs will no doubt confirm. Probably my skepticism and low level of acceptance of statements about special education (or education more generally) that just don’t add up are best captured in a book I published in 2002, Education Deform: Bright People Sometimes Say Stupid Things About Education.
I do not believe that much of the current reform legislation, including the No Child Left Behind Act or the President’s Commission on Excellence in Special Education, is rational or helpful (usually–actually, in almost every case, I suppose–irrationality doesn’t make good policy, good science, or acceptable practice). Perhaps my thoughts on these matters are best captured in the just published article, “The President’s Commission and the Devaluation of Special Education” (Education and Treatment of Children, 27, 307-324, in which there are quite a few typesetter’s errors, I’m sorry to say) and the forthcoming article in Phi Delta Kappan (the March, 2005, issue), “Waving to Ray Charles: Missing the Meaning of Disabilities.” If you wish the typescript of either article, I’ll be glad to send you an electronic version as an attachment.