ERIC Number: ED408758
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Becoming a Special Educator: Specialized Professional Training for Teachers of Children with Disabilities in Boston, 1870-1930.
Osgood, Robert L.
This paper examines the ways in which individuals have been prepared for work in special education by focusing on the Boston, Massachusetts, public schools from 1870 through the 1920's. During this period, selected teachers and teacher candidates were recruited and prepared for specific assignments as instructors of children with disabilities. This paper looks at how teacher training practices varied from program to program and at how they evolved over time. Information is reviewed on minimum qualifications for applicants, course work and field experience requirements, expectations for personal and professional character and behavior, special opportunities for preservice and inservice training, and examinations and other modes of evaluation. The paper examines implicit and explicit assumptions and rationales that helped to define, explain, or justify these programs, while contrasting the programs with the training for regular classroom assignments. Ways in which various activities, including collaborative projects, or personal and collective statements of the participants, helped to create a sense of unique professional identity among those involved in special education are explored. Finally, the article discusses implications drawn from this research for current efforts to redefine the relationship between special and regular education and to reduce the tensions and boundaries between special and general educators. (Contains 30 references.) (CR)
Descriptors: Disabilities, Educational History, Educational Trends, Elementary Secondary Education, Higher Education, Program Development, Regular and Special Education Relationship, Special Education Teachers, Teacher Behavior, Teacher Certification, Teacher Collaboration, Teacher Education Programs, Teacher Evaluation, Teacher Qualifications
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A