Many parents of autistic children who depend upon resources provided through the child’s school voted for Donald Trump. Betsy DeVos, Mr. Trump’s pick for Secretary of Education said recently that compliance with federally funded standards for the education of disabled children should be up to the states. We hope you realize what that’s going to mean for your child.


If you’re in a state like New Jersey where many resources are available, don’t think your child is going to be okay. The idea is that if a child in a state that provides little or no resources, those parents can move to a state like New Jersey. More children from other states and New Jersey’s resources will dwindle and those children will suffer.

No matter where you are, will you be able to afford to move to another state? Will an influx of people affect jobs, raise unemployment and other costs in the states offering better resources for disabled children? Once economic conditions become bad, with the more beneficial states cut funding because the costs have become excessive? Taxes will inevitably go up to the point that living in the more benefit-oriented states is unaffordable?

Think of your child. Disabled, particularly autistic children have a difficult time coping with change, no matter their age. Do you want to impose major change upon them? New home, new schools, new students to get to know, new teachers, new school bus drivers, new everything – will not help your child to advance and grow. You know it, so what are you going to do?

Realize this: There is a reason federal standards are essential and must be followed, without leaving some things up to the states. It is simply that economic and social change can cause disruption and imbalance. What is good for one state must be equally good for all others.  Every disabled student must have a minimum standard of educational opportunity and benefit in each and every state, providing reasonable balance and equity for all.

Even if you voted for Mr. Trump, you must let him and your Senators know today, this will not stand. Your child’s education, health and your own economic security are at stake. This is no joke. You will be among the very first people to lose precious, hard-fought-for resources for your child, no matter where you live in the country. Demand balance. Demand your rights and your child’s.