Report urges college for intellectually disabled

BOSTON (AP) — A Statehouse task force is recommending students with intellectual disabilities and autism be included in higher education alongside non-disabled peers in Massachusetts.

The panel said the state should let students with intellectual disabilities and autism who have not passed the MCAS to enroll in college courses.

The state should also expand a pilot program that allows students 18 to 22 with intellectual disabilities and autism to take college classes.

The 15-member Task Force on Higher Education for Students with Intellectual Disability and Autism Spectrum Disorder is headed by Rep. Tom Sannicandro, an Ashland Democrat.

Sannicandro said the goal of the report is to help bring a whole new population of students into the fold and let them to contribute their skills to the economy.

He said the state has largely ignored the students' potential.

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