dcsimg

Career Story: Special Needs Teacher In A Public School

Special Needs Teacher In A Public School

Job Title: Special Education Teacher

Type of Company: I work for county public schools in a suburb of Washington, DC.

Education: MA, Special Education

Previous Experience: I have worked privately and in the public school system with children with autism and other developmental disabilities.

Job Tasks: I teach students with special needs, which requires me to work with their parents, the general education teacher and their therapists to come up with an individualized educational plan that's suited to each one. I am responsible both for customizing these plans (known as IEP's) and for writing them up, and for adhering, in the process, to county, state and federal regulations.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of my job -- the truly wonderful part -- is having an impact for good on the life of a child. I enjoy watching my charges learn new skills and make progress at their own speed, in their own way.

The most difficult part of my job is dealing with adults who've lost sight of the things that are in a student's best interest. But another impediment is the amount of paperwork I have to complete to meet federal and local requirements -- in addition to teaching, planning, attending team meetings, etc. This job takes good planning and time-management skills.

Job Tips:
1.) Understand that this job can be extremely rewarding but is also extremely challenging. Learn how to develop positive relationships with parents and co-workers.

2.) Be prepared to keep learning. The field of special education is constantly changing.

3) Be aware of current issues and trends in special education. There are many occasions when you will be expected to answer questions on hot-button issues in special ed. and you will have to be on top of them.

Additional Thoughts: This job is one of the most rewarding and fulfilling, but it also quite challenging. Be aware of the challenges but always remember why you have chosen a career in special education; to make a difference in the life of children with disabilities.

Popular Schools offering Special Education Teaching Programs

quickinfoThese schools offer particularly quick info upon request, and we have written detailed profiles for each (click school names to see the profiles).

Request info from multiple schools, by clicking the Request Info links.

Matching School Ads

Concordia University, Nebraska offers accredited Master of Education and Master of Science degree programs online to help advance your career and become a transformative leader.

  • Programs: M.Ed. In Special Education - Inclusive Practices, M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction, M.Ed. In Curriculum and Instruction with Instructional Technology Leadership Emphasis, more...
  • Degrees: Master

Earn your graduate degree online with Northcentral University.

  • Programs: Special Education - PhD in Education, Special Education - Master of Education, Special Education - Doctor of Education, more...
  • Degrees: Doctorate, Master

Liberty University provides a world-class education with a solid Christian foundation, equipping men and women with the values, knowledge, and skills essential for success in every aspect of life.

  • Programs: M.Ed. - Program Specialist in Gifted Specialist, MA in Teaching - Special Education, M.Ed. Teaching and Learning - Special Education , more...
  • Degrees: Master, Associate

Learning at Full Sail University has always centered around interaction and the exchange of ideas. Our online curriculum fully embraces this philosophy.

  • Programs: Instructional Design & Technology
  • Degrees: Master

Pursue your education at Pacific Oaks College.

  • Programs: Preliminary Education Specialist Credential, M.A. Education with Preliminary Multiple Subject Teaching Credential, M.A. Education with Preliminary Education Specialist Instruction Credential, more...
  • Degrees: Master, Bachelor

For over 35 years, Keiser University has maintained a practical, hands-on approach to career education to help our students achieve their personal and professional goals. 

  • Programs: PhD in Instructional Design and Technology, Education Specialist in Instructional Design and Technology
  • Degrees: Doctorate, Certificate

Study online with California University of Pennsylvania.

  • Programs: Early Childhood Education (MEd plus Certification) - Online, Early Childhood Education (Certificate Only) - Online, Early Childhood Education (Master of Education) - Online, more...
  • Degrees: Certificate, Master
Matching School Ads
You are visiting:

Find a school near you

What are Career Stories?

Career Stories are concise, real-world career overviews written by people relating their personal career experiences and wisdom. They provide invaluable insights and mentoring advice to students and career changers.

Most stories include:

  • a typical day or project
  • tips and advice
  • best and worst parts
  • educational background
  • previous experience

Browse hundreds of Career Stories

SPEAK TO AN ADVISOR 1.844.285.6104