The market for highly qualified special education teachers remains unabated. The latest report of the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates that the need for special education teachers will increase by 17% percent between 2008 and 2018. This shortage of Special Education teachers has been identified regionally (i.e., Pennsylvania and New Jersey) and is particularly prevalent in urban centers in the immediate environs of Temple University. The Governor’s Commission on Teaching and America’s Future (2006) reported that in Pennsylvania, 52% of districts report challenges recruiting special education teachers.
- Commitment to evidence-based, instructional practices and their implementation in the classroom.
- Commitment to recognizing and ameliorating the impact of socio-cultural factors on the education of children with disabilities.
- Emphasis on preventative approaches that de-emphasize labels and traditional diagnostic categories to support improved teaching and learning.
- Commitment to inclusive practices both within schools and within society as a whole.
- Beginning in Fall 2021, students can choose a fully online program option to complete the MEd in Special Education.
Jason Travers, associate professor, is program coordinator of the Special Education program.
Julie Beth Kessler, associate professor of instruction, is program coordinator of the Online Special Education MEd program.
Changes to Special Education Certification
Students seeking Pennsylvania Department of Education teacher certification in Special Education PK-8 or Special Education 7-12 are advised of changes to the structure of Special Education certification. Act 82 of 2018 established a Special Education Grades PK-12 standalone certificate. This legislation discontinues the Special Education PK-8 and Special Education 7-12 certificates. Temple University must now prepare students to teach prekindergarten through grade 12 or up to 21 years of age. The Special Education Grades PK-12 certificate does not require certification in an additional content area. All students seeking Special Education PK-8 OR Special Education 7-12 must complete all requirements for these certifications, apply, and have their certificaiton issued by PDE before the end of December 2021. Any student applying for certification after December 2021 must complete the revised requirements specified for Special Education PK-12 certification. Additional information from PDE is available online at: Certification Preparation Program Guidelines for Special Education Grades PK-12 [pdf].