Presentation on theme: "Presentation for LEAD Conference Donna Parker, SPDG Project Manager September 21, 2010."— Presentation transcript:
Presentation for LEAD Conference Donna Parker, SPDG Project Manager September 21, 2010
The Division of Special Education’s SPDG has 5 initiatives: 1. RTI 2. School and Instructional Climate 3. RTI Math 4. Early Childhood 5. Teacher Equity* We’re going to talk about teacher equity today.
This initiative of the State Personnel Development Grant is planned to study and make recommendations regarding the major issues. As a part of the First to the Top initiative TNDOE is planning a state wide survey of licensed educators later in the school year. Watch for the TELL Tennessee Survey. This survey will give us additional information regarding special education issues.
The IRIS Center for Training Enhancements, Addressing the revolving door: How to retain your special education teachers. Factors Affecting the Equitable Distribution of Special Education Teachers, an on-line LEA survey conducted August 2010.
For district administrators and principals trying to improve the retention of high quality special education staff. Useful in understanding the unique factors affecting special education teachers.
Research results show that special education teachers are significantly more likely than general education teachers to transfer to other teaching positions--- ----about 10 times as likely source: The IRIS Center
It’s both recruitment and retention difficulties that cause: Students’ programs to be negatively impacted. Added expense (it costs money and time when a position turns over). And in the field of Special Education, even LEGAL ACTION! (and that time and expense)
MONEY, MONEY, MONEY- we already know that, but did you know that SCHOOL CLIMATE is right up there in the top factors? source: The IRIS Center
Research shows that beginning special education teachers are less likely to leave the teaching profession when they : View their schools as good places to work Experience positive relationships in the school Feel included in the school source: The IRIS Center
The research firmly links the retention of special education teachers to administrative support. source: The IRIS Center
Role Design From The IRIS Center: “Role overload can occur when special education teachers are unable to balance the demands of lesson planning and instruction with the other requirements of their jobs, such as attending IEP meetings, testing, scoring, writing reports, scheduling, and keeping up with paperwork. This aspect of role design contributes significantly to special education teacher attrition….” Special Education teachers feel torn between teaching tasks and bureaucratic requirements.
Factors Affecting the Equitable Distribution of Special Education Teachers and Service Providers An on-line survey was conducted with Supervisors of Special Education regarding a variety of issues related to recruitment, retention, and equitable distribution of special education staff.
Of responses indicating difficulty attracting (67%) or difficulty retaining (47%) high quality staff: 57% reported that the difficulty was attracting related service providers School districts have to complete with the medical field for many related services positions such as Speech Language Pathologists, Physical Therapists, Occupational Therapists, etc. It is generally accepted that this is a salary/wages issue. 47% reported the difficulty was that they could attract special education teachers, but were not satisfied with the quality of the applicants. Source: Factors Affecting the Equitable Distribution of Special Education Teachers and Service Providers, August 2010 Survey
Most frequently cited: Unhappy with current wages/salary Lack of resources Paperwork burden Pressure of special education’s legal requirements Source: Factors Affecting the Equitable Distribution of Special Education Teachers and Service Providers, August 2010 Survey
Also cited as reasons: Unhappy with school culture (e.g., collegiality, administrative attitudes, tangible support, school tradition, values and expectations) Lack of leadership or advancement possibilities Parent or community demands Lack of preparation time Source: Factors Affecting the Equitable Distribution of Special Education Teachers and Service Providers, August 2010 Survey
Many mature, experienced special education teachers have trouble, but a new special education teacher can easily be thrown into CRISIS…. This is especially true if the new special education teacher is not fully certified. They are even more likely to leave.
The survey says: A general education position at the same school (most frequent response) A special education position in state, but at another school or district (next most frequent response) Left the teaching profession (third most frequent response) Source: Factors Affecting the Equitable Distribution of Special Education Teachers and Service Providers, August 2010 Survey
Offering support: A well-designed mentoring program. The best special education mentors will be special educators. A good special education mentor will be able to assess the new teacher’s needs, listen to their concerns, and individualize support, particularly in: Discipline, difficulties with parents, IEPs, role design. source: The IRIS Center
When asked for the MOST successful strategy to assist novice special education teachers and/or related service providers: Mentoring of special education staff by experienced special educators was cited most frequently by far.
“Beginning teachers who receive support from their school colleagues generally enjoy greater success than those who do not. A positive school climate in which there is a reciprocity of support among special and general educators, school leaders, parents, paraprofessional, and other service-providers is one in which new teachers are more likely to thrive.” source: The IRIS Center
Emotional and Psychological Support Create caring, collegial work environments that help create a sense of belonging Communicate caring, respect, interest, and confidence… Include the special educator as a part of the school Learn about the special education program and show a genuine interest in students with disabilities Maintain open communication Show appreciation Listen (use active listening) source: The IRIS Center
Work with special educators to structure their roles so that they can focus on teaching and supporting students with disabilities. Consider the number of students and the composition of the caseload Help assure time for planning, collaboration, and non- teaching responsibilities Minimize paperwork and non-teaching requirements to the extent possible Discuss role-related issues with the teacher source: The IRIS Center
Establish a school climate that values learning, inquiry, and reflection Provide learning opportunities centered on the needs of the teacher Offer constructive feedback about teaching Create opportunities for special educators to observe others source: The IRIS Center
In light of the research and the recent survey results, it is recommended that you take time to revisit the “What is a Good School?”* domains, standards, and measurement statements in light of your special education staff. In particular, look at E. Leadership, F. Organization of the School, H. Climate and Culture, I. Safe and Orderly Environment, K. Communication You can then use the rubric to diagnose your special education staff strengths and weaknesses *What is a Good School, copyright 2008, 2009 Tennessee Department of Education
The IRIS Center for Training Enhancements. (n.d.). Addressing the revolving door: How to retain your special education teachers. To access, google The IRIS Center and enter the Resource Locator. A report on the “Factors Affecting the Equitable Distribution of Special Education Teachers and Related Service Providers” will be made available soon.
The National Clearinghouse for Professions in Special Education, The Council for Exceptional Children The Personnel Improvement Center, National Center to Improve Recruitment and Retention of Qualified Personnel for Children with Disabilities
Feel free to contact: Donna Parker, Project Manager for Tennessee State Personnel Development Grant (SPDG) Donna.Parker@tn.gov Can also contact: Veronica McDonald, SPDG Director Veronica.McDonald@tn.gov