Those in special education teaching jobs work with students who have needs that can’t be met in a regular classroom. Some students may have autism or intellectual or emotional challenges, prevent them from reaching their potential without the assistance of a specially trained teacher. In some cases, students may be blind or deaf but still need to learn basic life skills such as cooking, shopping or buying a home. This teachers can adjust classroom lessons to meet the requirements of a wide variety of students who face learning challenges.
Jobs in special education teaching include working one on one with severely handicapped students, being part of a team at a deaf school or hospital, using music therapy. Some spend all their time in administrative positions or helping to educate or mentor other education teaches. Although most of those in jobs in education teaching work with students who only have minor disabilities, others have additional training so they can work with children who have speech or language problems. Still others help prepare IEPs (individualized education plans) which provide other teachers with information about how classrooms need to be modified to help students learn to their maximum potential.
There are even special education teaching opportunities available in hospitals, mental health facilities and doctors’ offices. Candidates may often work with emotionally disturbed children or those with learning challenges. There could be an overlap between medical and emotional issues, making regular communication between teachers and doctors a priority. Some jobs are permanent and others are temporary. Most teachers who work with children who have emotional issues get special certification or a Master’s degree in the field.
Requirements for that education teaching jobs can vary from state to state, as can the types of jobs available. In Washington, DC, for example, those seeking employment could check with the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services. It oversees Gallaudet Univeristy, a college for deaf students, as well as the American Printing House for the Blind. Special education teachers can contact this office to get leads on possible job opportunities. Teaching jobs can include being teachers’ assistants, working as aides or being a teacher without special certification.
There are a huge variety of careers in education teaching. They include adaptive physical education teachers, individuals who can alter the regular physical education requirement so that blind, deaf or physically handicapped children can take part in the classes. These teachers must make sure that children are still getting plenty of exercise, even if they are in wheelchairs. Other special education teachers include art and dance therapists, teachers who have extra training in working with emotionally disturbed children. Some special education teachers have auditory training to supplement their work with deaf children.
Jobs in special education teaching can be adapted to special settings, making each job slightly different. Some teachers have their own classrooms and work with small groups of students. Others may go to parents’ homes and work with severely mentally or physically challenged children on a one to one basis. The jobs can be so different from one setting to another that it is difficult to list all the different types of special education teaching jobs.
Each job must be tailored to the children’s needs, different skills that need to be developed and the setting where the teacher works. Some educators work with other teachers as part of a team while other may work only in resource rooms. Some will work directly with the children while others may be in administrative positions and oversee other special education teachers.