Oklahoma State Sen. Todd Clements says he’s proposing legislation that would end carpeting that is on floors in classrooms, which can make it hard for students to see.
“I have two students that have disabilities that they are really struggling with,” Clements said.
“One is dyslexia and the other is dyspraxia.
The reason they have to be on different floors is they’re at different grade levels.”
The proposal is a response to the National Coalition for Disability Education’s recent recommendation to end carpeted floors in public schools.
The coalition recommends carpeting on floors at grade level so students with dyslexias can see, read and hear, as well as those with disabilities who have difficulties hearing.
Clements’ proposal is similar to the one the coalition proposed in March, but Clements is also taking a more proactive approach.
“We don’t want to be in the middle of this debate, which is a long, drawn out, painful process,” Coles said.
The coalition’s recommendation also called for the elimination of carpeted flooring in public buildings.
Censored flooring was used in public school classrooms in Oklahoma for many years.
The carpeting is made from wood and metal and is usually applied by a contractor that has experience in carpentry, flooring and tile.
“The carpeting itself is not very effective, it can actually lead to the floor being uneven and the floor getting pushed off the ground,” said Clements.
“When I look at a room that has carpeted in, it is almost impossible for me to see the walls and ceiling.”
Coles says carpeting has been used in classrooms for decades, but not for long enough to be used for students with disabilities.
“It’s really important to look at the fact that if the carpeting does not help people with disabilities and if it actually creates more difficulty for the people that are most vulnerable, then that’s the end of the matter,” Cors said.
Clements said carpeting can also create additional barriers for people with mobility issues.
“This is just one of the things that I am concerned about with carpeting, especially as I see more and more people are moving in with mobility challenges,” Culsons comments.
“I don’t think that’s good for the students and I think that is not good for our state or for our nation.”
Oklahoma State Sen., Todd Coles, said the carpet on floors would be removed in classrooms and that he’s working with the coalition to get the legislation passed.