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Career Story: Special Education Teacher In A Suburban High School

Special Education Teacher In A Suburban High School

Job Title: Teacher

Type of Company: I work for a school district in a suburban area.

Education: BA, Psychology, Iona College •• BA, Special Education, Georgia State University •• MA, Education/Administration, The College of St. Rose

Previous Experience: (1 year) Mental Health Worker: Four Winds Psychiatric Hospital (1 year) Teacher/Counselor: St. Coleman (School to Work Program) (3 years) Special Education Teacher: Newnan High School (3 years) Special Education Teacher: Niskayuna High School

Job Tasks: One of my responsibilities is organizing and teaching the GED program. I work with students individually to prepare them for the New York state GED exam. I provide subject related lessons, feedback and previous work for the students to look at and practice. I administer tests for the students to practice before the exam and help them identify their areas of strengths and weaknesses. I also complete all of the applications for the students as well as the New York state statistics.

My primary responsibility is to help students who are struggling with their academics. I communicate and work with over forty teachers and the parents of our students so that everyone is aware of student progress. I work closely with the students to help them stay organized for each day as well as help them study for tests. Many of the students need help with keeping track of missing assignments, getting caught up with work, preparing for the next topic that will be taught in the classroom, preparing for finals and New York State Regents, and also having a "safe place" to go during their free time.

I am also a member of the Student Support Team. This group of individuals communicate the progress of students so that we can provide support where it is needed for students throughout the school district. I am also one of the coaches for the district. I managed the varsity team as well as organize the season for three other teams in our program.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of my job is being able to watch my students succeed and enjoy the process. Success is different for each student so it is interesting to watch the students move past their obstacle and grow. There are no "bad" parts of my job because I am able to take part in the lives of children and help them succeed.

Job Tips: I think that all people that are entering a career as a teacher should know that the courses in college prepare you for an overall outlook on education. It is not until you experience the situations in the classroom that you can fully understand what it takes to be a teacher and a "student" of teaching. There are so many things to learn so continue to share your ideas and borrow from others. Every experience is a learning experience!

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