Title: Workforce watch
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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00090862/00005
 Material Information
Title: Workforce watch
Series Title: Workforce watch
Physical Description: Serial
Language: English
Creator: Center on Personnel Studies in Special Education, College of Education, University of Florida
Publisher: Center on Personnel Studies in Special Education, College of Education, University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: February 2004
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00090862
Volume ID: VID00005
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.

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II
W S PECI A E0 CTI O
15RKOR,


Special Education Administrators

What Should Districts Know About New Candidates?


The number of vacancies and unfilled
positions nationwide indicates that
districts are experiencing a shortage of
special education administrators. Fur-
ther, it is estimated that more than 20
percent of district-based special educa-
tion administrators are not fully certified.
The supply of special education admin-
istrators is insufficient to meet current
needs. Fewer than one percent of all
administration graduates with masters
or doctoral degrees specialize in spe-
cial education administration. Moreover,
there are special challenges associated
with recruiting individuals into special
education administration programs.
Because candidates tend to be older,
have families, and are further along in
their careers, entering a special educa-
tion administration program can repre-
sent a significant financial and personal
sacrifice.


If the trend continues, a significant num-
FEBRUARY2004 ber of special education administra-
PB-5 tor positions will remain unfilled in the
coming years because there will not
be enough qualified candidates to fill
them. As districts look to fill vacant posi
tions-special education director, super-
visor, assistant supervisor-the emphasis
ITER ON PERSONNEL will be on finding satisfactory candidates
STDIEIN SPECIAL who meet district qualifications.
EDUCATION


What should you know when determining
the quality of applicants? Read on to find
insights from the research.


Do You Know the Type of
Preparation the Administrator
Received?
Preparation programs for special edu-
cation administrators first came on the
scene in the 1960s, and many disap-
peared or were absorbed by educa-
tional administration programs during
the 1970s. Today, only a small number
of institutions of higher education offer
advanced training in special education
administration. Those that do typically:
* Require two to four courses in special
education (e.g., legal principles, spe-
cial education supervision), with only
a handful of programs requiring up-
ward of nine courses.
* Require two to six courses in educa-
tional administration and additional
courses in research and content areas.
* Require an internship for candidates
who are pursuing certification or an
advanced degree in educational
administration.


Special education
administrators-Do you
know how they are prepared
and licensed?









I = SPECIAEDUCATION WORKFORCEWATC INSIGHTS FO RSAC


There currently are no national
standards for special education
administrators. Course content
varies from program to program;
however, most preparation pro-
grams are linked to state certifica-
tion requirements.

Although litigation remains a pri-
9 mary focus in
most course-
work, some ad-
Vewly devel- ministrator prep-
ped competen- ration pro-
es will soon be grams are be-
ed by the Na-
ed by the N- ginning to em-
onal Council of in .
ncreditation of phasize the inte-
:creditation of
acher Educa- gration of knowl-
on (NCATE) to edge, skills, and
:credit special dispositions from
Jucation admin- special educa-
trator training tion, general ed-
rograms. It will ucation, and ed-
ehoove school ucational ad-
stricts to under- ministration. In
and the basis addition, specific
r the new stan- themes that re-
ards-do they flect the chang-
flect unified
stems of educa- ing roles of spe
on, or do they cial education
flect the exis- administrators
nce of the dual in the context of
stems of gen- school district re-
al and special form are being
Jucation? introduced into
some prepara-
tion programs. They include:

Knowledge and skills related
to culturally and linguistically
diverse populations.


* Participation of students with
disabilities in the general edu-
cation curriculum.

* Collaboration and teaming.

* Alignment of curricular pro-
grams with state standards.


Do You Know the Basis
for the Administrator's
Certification or Licensure?

States vary in how they define
competencies and expectations
for special education administra-
tors. While some states have been
quite rigorous in crafting their def-
initions, others have no definitions
or guidelines.

As a result, states vary in how they
license or certify special education
administrators. Some states offer
special education administrator
endorsements-these are either
in conjunction with the receipt
of a general education admin-
istrative certificate or they are a
separate endorsement altogether.
The number of endorsements has
grown over the years.

In recent years, some states have
instituted alternative paths to cer-
tification and licensure. Such ar-
rangements range from alterna-
tive programs in institutions of
higher education to on-the-job
training. Caution is warranted, as
research is not available to docu-
ment the efficacy of alternative


programs in delivering services
to students with disabilities and
in retaining special education
personnel.


For More Information

Information reported in this brief
was based on the COPSSE issue
brief, Special Education Ad-
ministration at a Crossroads:
Availability, Licensure, and Prep-
aration of Special Education Ad-
ministrators, by Carl Lashley and
Mary Lynn Boscardin. This docu-
ment can be found on the COPSSE
web site at www.copsse.org.




S CENTER ON
PERSONNEL
STUDIES IN SPECIAL
SE EDUCATION

About COPSSE
The Center on Personnel Studies in Spe-
cial Education is funded by the Office of
Special Education Programs of the U.S.
Department of Education [cooperative
agreement #H325Q000002]. COPSSE
research is designed to inform scholars
and policymakers about beginning teach-
er quality, effective initial preparation, and
the effects of preparation alternatives. The
Center is directed by Drs. Paul Sindelar
and Mary Brownell. The policy briefs were
produced by Warger, Eavy & Associates.
University of Florida, 300 Norman Hall,
PO. Box 117050, Gainesville, FL 32611
352-392-0701 (X283), www.copsse.org

Opinionsexpressed herein
D do not necessarily reflect he
views of the US Department
X -- of Education


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