ERIC Number: ED439131
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000-Feb-26
Reference Count: N/A
Meeting the Twin Challenges: Improving Teacher Quality and Supply in State Pilot Project for "Special Education Transition Certification."
Brown, Kathleen Sullivan; John, Delores M.
This paper describes a state pilot project which addressed Missouri's current and anticipated special education teacher shortages by reinventing teacher education and using new technologies and service delivery models to increase the quality and supply of special educators. It worked to certify current general educators as special educators. The first year of the pilot project is described, including development as a collaborative effort among the university, the state department of education, 50 teachers, and 17 local school districts. The paper examines startup and design of the curriculum, recruitment and selection of teachers, introduction of distance learning technologies, and initial evaluation of the first year. Evaluation data include Praxis test scores, participant feedback, administrator comments, and a state department of education audit. The project successfully increased the supply of special educators and improved the quality of teaching. Lessons learned included: the project was extremely labor intensive for faculty and staff; adult learners needed nurturance and support beyond what is traditionally available; district support was crucial; veteran teachers who transferred into special education learned about the invisibility of special education; and general educators needed and desired more understanding and professional competence to be prepared for inclusive classrooms. (SM)
Descriptors: College School Cooperation, Distance Education, Educational Change, Elementary Secondary Education, Higher Education, Partnerships in Education, Preservice Teacher Education, Program Development, Program Effectiveness, Program Evaluation, Special Education Teachers, Teacher Competencies, Teacher Supply and Demand, Teaching Skills
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Missouri