From National Public Radio — Planet Money: “When you are an adult applying for disability you have to prove you cannot function in a ‘work-like setting.’ When you are a kid, a disability can be anything that prevents you from progressing in school. Two-thirds of all kids on the program today have been diagnosed with mental or intellectual problems.
Jahleel is a kid you can imagine doing very well for himself. He is delayed. But given the right circumstances and support, its easy to believe that over the course of his schooling Jahleel could catch up.
Lets imagine that happens. Jahleel starts doing better in school, overcomes some of his disabilities. He doesnt need the disability program anymore. That would seem to be great for everyone, except for one thing: It would threaten his family’s livelihood. Jahleel’s family primarily survives off the monthly $700 check they get for his disability…”
Read more, see statistics at Unfit for Work: The startling rise of disability in America | Planet Money.