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WASHINGTON (AP) - A D.C. councilmember says special education is facing a crisis in the nation's capital and has introduced legislation intended to overhaul the system and improve student outcomes.

Councilmember David Catania introduced the package of bills on Tuesday. Catania is an independent who's running for mayor and chairs the council's education committee.

Catania says the achievement gap between special-education students and general-education students has been growing since 2007 and that students need more services to succeed.

Among other things, he says the legislation would establish the procedural safeguards that exist for parents in jurisdictions with more effective special education programs.

Also Tuesday, Councilmember Mary Cheh introduced a bill that calls for the city to serve meals to children living in poverty on days when schools are closed because of snow.

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