Abilities of Youth Reported on the Functional Rating
Youth for whom a functional rating was completed were assessed on four clusters of functional skills (motor skills, social interaction and communication, personal living skills, and community living skills) and on an overall measure of independence.
- Average standard scores for youth with disabilities across the measures range from 43 to 57, compared with a mean of 100 for the general population.
- From 22 percent to 38 percent of youth with disabilities across subtests have scores that are more than six standard deviations below the mean.
- Across measures, from 11 percent to 15 percent of youth represented by those with a functional rating have scores above the mean for the general population.
- Youth are significantly less likely to score more than six standard deviations below the mean on personal living skills (22 percent) than on community living skills (38 percent) or the measure of broad independence (37 percent).
- The few youth with learning disabilities, speech or other health impairments, emotional disturbances, or traumatic brain injuries who have a functional rating together scored higher on the overall measure of broad independence than youth in other disability categories, with a mean of 90.
- The next highest-ranking mean score on the broad independence measure (53) was for youth with hearing impairments; it significantly surpassed the mean scores of all other categories, which ranged from 10 to 23.
- About two-thirds or more of youth with autism, multiple disabilities, visual or orthopedic impairments, or deaf-blindness score more than six standard deviations below the mean on the measure of broad independence.
- Only one statistically significant difference across functional performance measures is apparent in the mean standard scores of youth with disabilities who differ in gender, age, household income, or racial/ethnic background, favoring boys over girls on the motor skills measure (60 vs. 42). Although there were some differences in the percentage of youth in particular standard deviation categories, no consistent patterns were apparent.